You find Le Capitole along rue Xavier Sigalon, a beautifully renovated, cobbled street just off Place Henri 1ere. From the outside, it looks tiny; but one walks through the entrance doors into a vast area with an old zinc bar running some 25 metres down the side, and faded posters on the wall. A barman is wiping down the zinc in a lacklustre manner and an elderly couple sitting at a small table in the rear look up at you as you enter, their glances flickering over you before their eyes return to their glasses of rouge.
It is as if one had stepped back half a century or so in time.
Which made it the perfect place to see Minuit a Paris, Woody Allen's 'American in Paris' tribute to the city and its cultural heritage. Or rather, to Woody Allen's idea of the city and its cultural heritage.
The conceit is simple. Gil Pender/Woody Allen, a hack writer of Hollywood screenplays, is working on a novel set in a nostalgia shop. On a trip to Paris with his fiancee and her caricature Republican parents, he is transported by the midnight bells of the city to the '20s, where he meets the Fitzgeralds, Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, Picasso, Dali, Matisse and loads of others - yeh, I remember, Man-Ray, Bunuel, Degas were there too; as was, of course, the girl of his dreams, the ex-mistress of most of the above. And no, he doesn't get the girl - or not this girl anyway.
But the list of heroes provides the opportunity for some lovely cameo performances - Dali, for example,is brilliant. There are also a couple of gratuitous appearances by the wife of the President of France, which is fine if you like that kind of thing. And the camera relishes and revels in the recreated, but stereotypical, Paris.
It's a slight and sometimes lazy movie. But it runs for merely an hour and half, ending just as the nicotine monster needs feeding.
If you want to see it, see it in Uzes. Because the tribute to le capitale is less impressive than Le Capitole.
Today's listening: Francis Cabrel, Des hommes pareils. This was playing in Monoprix the other day and I can't get it out of my head.