8:30pm – Saturday, July 16 on ABC2
It’s V-J Day and war is over. Jimmy Doyle, a mercurial and talented saxophonist has discarded his uniform and traded it in for a flamboyant, hand-painted shirt. Eyes darting, he prowls across a night club floor, sizing up his prospects for the evening. Eventually, he spies Francine Doyle, a bravely independent band vocalist, and moves in on her. At first he is repulsed, but the attraction between the two of them is obvious. Though she leaves the club in a huff, the two will meet again.
Both Jimmy, a practitioner of the new be-bop form of jazz, and Francine are immensely gifted and highly eccentric. Francine is the first to achieve success, as a recording artist and movie star, and Jimmy cannot bring himself to live with that fact. He is restless and angry, awaiting the recognition he believes is his due.
This is a love story unlike any other, charged with virulent emotion. Jimmy and Francine are married and have a child. Even as Jimmy’s frustrations are growing, Francine begins her rise to stardom. She sings with Jimmy’s band and one good break follows another. Timmy nags at her, gets drunk, and sleeps around. Finally, their relationship is shattered. In this sense, ‘New York, New York’ is very much a contemporary story — two people, both career driven, are forced to confront the reality of their situation. In another sense, the film is an exuberant throwback to the forties, with its rich big band sound, stunning glamour, and supercharged energy.
Directed by Martin Scorsese, New York New York stars Robert De Niro, Liza Minnelli and Lionel Stander