In '30s Paris, ageing actor Victor Derval (Noiret) meets Liza (Varga), a girl fascinated by the theatre in general and Derval in particular. They become lovers and she moves into his townhouse as his secretary. But there, she falls in love with Derval's son Paul (Blanc).
Maillet's romance neatly sketches in the background of inter-war France, but never gets as much detail into the characters. Blanc's Paul is a cardboard cut-out and, despite Varga's best efforts, Liza remains a French movie cliché - the beautiful naïf who's every action is dictated by the needs of the plot, not the character.
Only Noiret overcomes the limitations of the part. But even watching him tailor this off-the-peg roué into something more fitting isn't enough to make the film worthwhile.