Mikey and Nicky (1976): Elaine May’s Cassavetes-Like Drama, Starring Cassavetes and Peter Falk

Significantly, John Cassavetes’ style was so powerful that even his acting vehicles for other filmmakers seem as if they were directed by him.

Elaine May’s maverick feature, Mikey and Nicky, starring John Cassavetes and Peter Falk, feels like a sequel to Cassavetes’ eralier film, “Husbands,” with a touch of another of his features, “The Killing of a Chinese Bookie” thrown into the mix.

Though May put her own stamp on the material, the gritty, improvised observations clearly display a Cassavetes-like realism. Relying on evocative dialogue and intense acting, the narrative weaves a love-hate bond between two men during one fatal night in Philadelphia’s lower-depths.