Topo, the legally blind villain of Cold Comes the Night and a mule by trade, is traveling by car with his nephew John when John convinces him to stop off at a seedy motel for the night. John engages the services of a prostitute while Topo tries to check himself in, unable to see a red pen on a cord and unhappy about having to show his non-driver’s ID card to the motel clerk and proprietor, Chloe.
John manages to get himself slashed by the hooker just before he fatally shoots her, and in the ensuing investigation a crooked police officer confiscates the Jeep he was driving Topo to his meeting with disreputable men in. Suddenly finding himself without his driver or the money hidden in the Jeep–Topo isn’t exactly mourning John’s death as he thinks the younger man is an idiot–Topo decides to kidnap Chloe and her daughter. He has Chloe drive them all to the police impound lot, where he must rely on young Sophie to watch her mother carry out his orders.
Chloe finds that the cash is already missing from the Jeep, though, and in pleading for Topo to spare her life shows that she’s noticed his vision problems. She correctly surmises that he’s been trying to hide his deteriorating vision from his employers since he doesn’t have any other line of work, and offers to work together in exchange for a percentage. Saying much more would be revealing the ending, but Topo does eventually take Chloe up on her offer, because “good help is hard to find”.