The film is set in medieval Europe. Phillipe "The Mouse" Gaston (Matthew Broderick), a peasant thief, is imprisoned in the dungeons of Aquila and set for execution for his petty crimes - but he escapes by crawling through the prison sewers to freedom. He makes a run for it into the countryside away from the city, sparking a manhunt. He is nearly captured when Captain Navarre (Rutger Hauer) befriends him. Navarre has been hunted by the Bishop's men for two years, ever since he escaped with the Lady Isabeau (Michelle Pfeiffer) who the Bishop has lusted after. Navarre and Isabeau have a curse that the Bishop has placed on them that causes Navarre to be a wolf during the night and Isabeau to be a hawk during the day. Navarre insists that Philipe help him re-enter the city to help him kill the heavily guarded Bishop.