Highly stylised, existentialist comedy thriller directed by Michel Deville. Jeanne Moreau and Michel Piccoli play the proprietors of a deserted café-bar to which the same four card players return night after night: a doctor (Richard Bohringer), a tradesman (Phillippe Léotard), a journalist (Daniel Auteuil) and a professor (Claude Piéplu). Fanny Ardant plays Lotte, a beautiful young woman in white who hangs seductively around the bar while the others play. When a police commissioner begins investigating a murder case, the four card players all become suspects - but nothing is quite as it seems.
United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: French ( Dolby Digital 2.0 ), English ( Subtitles ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Biographies, Filmographies, Interactive Menu, Photo Gallery, Scene Access, Trailer(s), SYNOPSIS: With ingenious camera work, witty dialogue, and a setting that almost never wanders from the cavernous interior of a mod cafe-bar, this drama by Michel Deville has a lot of pluses. A woman (Jeanne Moreau) and a man (Michel Piccoli, the "nonentity" of the title) jointly run the vast cafe and every night play host to the same four men as they sit around a card table -- a doctor, a journalist, a merchant, and a professor. A seductive woman (Fanny Ardant) lounges around in a hammock nearby. When the police commissioner starts investigating a murder, the four card players become suspects. Charming bits show an irritable "paltoquet" shoving the opening credits off the screen so the story can get going. He also sits around reading the novel from which the screenplay was adapted and provides music with a portable record player. These inventive touches allow the movie to work on several levels at once. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Ceasar Awards, ...Le Paltoquet