In 1965 six French New Wave directors took a Paris neighborhood and concocted a short sketch around it. The results sometimes favor character and story and sometimes local flavor, but almost all are engaging in their own right. Jean Douchet and Jean-Luc Godard offer French slices of romantic comedy in the sexually open 1960s with Saint Germain des Prés and Montparnasse et Levallois.
Jean Rouch's Gare du Nord is slight of substance but beautifully explores the neighborhood in a gorgeous tracking shot. Jean-Daniel Pollet's Rue Saint-Denis offers two characters in a witty comedy of a mousy dishwasher who brings a brassy streetwalker to his dumpy apartment. Eric Rohmer's Place de l'Étoile, a sometimes silly but deftly managed little comedy of a man who strikes a panhandler and is terrified he killed him, displays a giddy goofiness unseen in his later work.
Claude Chabrol's shiver-inducing slice of urban life La Muette ventures outside the oppressive hallways and tiny rooms only once, at the end, as if to celebrate the escape of the rebellious boy from his bickering parents.