Classic French underworld drama set in Paris at the turn of the century. When Georges Manda (Serge Reggiani) falls for Marie (Simone Signoret), he faces the wrath of her boyfriend, the petty crook Roland (William Sabatier). Gang boss Felix (Claude Dauphin) who secretly lusts after Marie, orders the two to fight it out for her hand, hoping to eliminate his love rival. When his boyhood friend is subsequently framed for the murder, Georges, not realising Felix's involvement, does the decent thing and turns himself in to the police. The tragedy is complete when Georges discovers Felix's role in his downfall, escapes from custody, and kills Felix.