Jean-Pierre Melville stars in his own ’59 flick, Deux Hommes Dans Manhattan or Two Men In Manhattan. He plays a journalist for the French press who has eye bags that make him look like someone tattooed a punch to his face.

Anyway, so at some seemingly normal UN event in New York, it’s noted that the French representative was absent and this info trickles around until Melville takes the case to find out what’s really going on and why the politician wasn’t there.

He enlists the help of his alcoholic photographer/informant and they go out on the town to try to trace the missing man’s whereabouts. Only, they’re DUH DUH DUH! being followed by a mysterious car. I wonder what happens next!

So amidst the mystery, there’s a helluva lotta the vision of Manhattan as per Melville. It’s the beautiful one, the nighttime neon signs and smokey ballrooms and jazz jazz jazz. It’s fast cars and racy women and grimy streets, hostile and alluring all at once.

It’s a new wave noir if there ever was one, mixing the crime/sleuth theme with handheld cameras, off the cuff dialogue and fatalism set within the confines of the big apple. Just makes me wanna go there and realize its nothing like what Melville paints. Film’s plot is pretty balls by the by but you gotta love Melville’s popped collar check coat, hat, bow tie and his partner’s herringbone coat over a slim suit and wool tie.

Cherchez la femme!