Both a tribute to classic American gangster films and a source of inspiration for French New Wave filmmakers, Bob le Flambeur is the first in a series of stylish noirs that Jean-Pierre Melville made in the mid-'50s. Co-scripted by the popular crime writer Auguste Le Breton (Rififi), this is the story of ex-bank robber and compulsive gambler Bob (Roger Duchesne), who plans a heist at the Deauville casino. As in many films of this genre, he assembles a team of old friends and new acquaintances to do the job, and is determined to pull it off despite the fact that the odds are stacked against him. The overall tone is admirably lighthearted, however, and despite many stylistic and thematic references to American caper movies, the whole enterprise remains genuinely French. "This is a kind of film that we want to make!" exclaimed the young and rebellious François Truffaut back in 1955. Jean-Luc Godard, in his turn, acknowledged Melville's influence by giving him an extended cameo in Breathless.