Elaine May was born in Philadelphia and it shows in Mikey and Nicky as they roll through the city on a wild night. She wrote and directed this thrilling piece of 70’s magic that still hasn’t gotten it’s respect. That was a stellar decade for films in general so a lot of quality stuff gets lost and Mikey and Nicky is one of those hidden gems. Elaine May is an extremely gifted writer who has been recognized by the likes of the Academy but she can also direct, which is cool to see from a woman in the 70’s.
Nicky is a paranoid man who is holed up in a hotel room at the beginning of the film because he is being chased down by the mob. He calls his old pal Mikey who shows up and it’s obvious that he’s helped him out before. Mikey gets Nicky up out of the hotel room and tries to help him make an escape plan but they get sidetracked numerous times. Their friendship is tested as a hit-man hired by the mob gets closer and closer to his target.
Mikey and Nicky is a very intense and up close film that’s really about two dudes living out a ridiculously high octane night. I really like Peter Falk as Mikey but I absolutely adore John Cassavetes's performance as Nicky who is the man running from death. The production design is on a really high level thanks to Paul Sylbert who has worked on some of my favorite films. Elaine May offered up a very solid crime film when they were sort of at their peak and it totally stands the test of time.