Three of my interests combine in this scene: maps, cameras and prostitutes. See the Blowup Moment for cameras in films. My research into pre-Vivre sa vie representations of prostitutes in French cinema is still at an early stage, but here are some illustrations:
The prostitute-map combination had been used seven years earlier, in the similarly themed film Identité judiciaire:
Undressing the woman to search her is an aspect of police procedure that is not shown in the later film.
As we might expect, maps are an essential part of the décor of Police judiciaire, a police procedural set entirely in and around the investigative police headquarters at 36 quai des Orfèvres:
Maps supplement the film's restricted setting, bringing into frame the city beyond. Here, for example, the chief is pointing to the location of a raid planned for that night, in Montmartre:
The details given are very specific: place Saint Georges to place Clichy, via the rue de Douai. On the map he traces a line along the boulevard de Clichy, from the Gaumont Palace to the Cirque Médrano, and indicates the assembly points: place Blanche, place Pigalle and place Vintimille.
A different type of map also takes us out from the Quai des Orfèvres. This is a plan of the hotel on the rue Ganneron, 18e, where a double murder was committed:
The detective specifies that the hotel overlooks the cemetery at Montmartre, and though the film doesn't visit this picturesque location a photograph is provided:
The name of the hotel is invented, and the building doesn't correspond to anything I can see on the rue Ganneron. The photograph looks strangely like a collage, and seems to me to be faked.
The filmmakers seem to have been given wide access to police headquarters. Even if a number of offices and laboratories are studio constructions, the courtyard, staircases and some corridors are real:
As are the views from office windows:
Otherwise, like every other French policier with a Quai des Orfèvres setting (see here for a sample), the film offers views of the building's exterior and vicinity. This begins with the opening credits:
The observant will have spotted the name Pierre Léaud in the credits above. Jean-Pierre Léaud's father didn't manage to get a rôle for his son in this film, as he had in another film the same year on which he had worked, La Tour, prends garde!. Here is the thirteen-year-old Jean-Pierre with the film's star, Jean Marais:
Jean-Pierre Léaud does, however, make an appearance in Police judiciaire. Look carefully at the photograph on the desk of commissaire Frédéric:
Since La Tour, prends garde! came out a month before Police judiciaire, this was not Jean-Pierre Léaud's début on screen. A soon-to-be star who does make a first appearance in this film can be glimpsed here:
To help you guess who it is, here he is in a film from the following year: