Returning to the art deco New York he recreated in Radio Days,
parodies the exotic light comedies of the pre-war years with this hokum-filled thriller - and casts himself (at 67) as the romantic lead, veteran insurance sleuth CW Briggs. The movie opens full of frantic His Girl Friday office bustle, with Allen's enervated variant on his usual hyperactive motormouth engaged in a verbal sex war with
's seemingly self-assured efficiency expert Fitz. Thence, the various romantic and investigative lines get progressively (and irritatingly) cross-wired as, in a screwball conceit, gamekeeper CW turns poacher, following hypnosis at a birthday party. Droopy-eyed in close-up, neurotic in disposition, of course, and professionally threatened when his 'intuitive' style is challenged by the 'modern methods' used by the cherishably brick-like agency stooges hired by his boss, CW Briggs is an unlikely prize for
's Veronica Lake-alike femme fatale.