Previous to ‘The Nice Guys’ Shane Black, whilst having many writing credits, has actually only directed two other films. I’m a fan of both ‘Iron Man 3’ and ‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang’ and with the two leads featured in ‘The Nice Guys’ I was sure that Black’s run of good directorial efforts was destined to continue.
The fact that Black also co-wrote this movie is important, having the directorial reign over his own project meant that the narrative is brought to life in the way Black wanted it to be. The narrative in question was fantastic, it felt very original and creative yet I also sensed some nods to ‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang’ which I appreciated – these aren’t anything major but I liked the subtle continuities between the films. There were only a few narrative moments that I wasn’t so fond of but nothing enough to stop my enjoyment of the film. Coupled with this strong narrative was a surprising amount of action scenes. Whether this was a car chase, a hand to hand brawl or a full on shoot out ‘The Nice Guys’ had some of the best action moments we’ve seen in cinema this year! What made these action scenes so effective, as well as the other elements to the narrative, was the ability to shock me. Within each of these scenes I’d often find myself gasping in disbelief which I loved as it proved to me how well written and directed the story was.
As I mentioned earlier in my review, I was looking forward to this film due to the two lead actors who starred, Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe. Gosling really is the star of the show here, he’s very funny in both his delivery of lines and the more physical elements to his performance. It’s been great to see Gosling play more entertaining characters this year in the likes of ‘The Big Short’ and now ‘The Nice Guys’ in contrast to the usually brooding and less talkative characters he has portrayed in the past. Crowe suited his role very well and I completely bought him as his character. The chemistry he and Gosling have is perfect for this film and is one of the many reasons that it’s so successful. These performances combined with the script mean that hilarity can be the only result. Futhermore once these elements are inserted into action sequences you can understand why they are some of the best this year. When all these elements come together it means that ‘The Nice Guys’ is just so much fun.
‘The Nice Guys’ will truly be one of 2016’s cinematic highlights. Shane Black has struck gold once more with a fantastically written and directed film brought to life by two brilliant lead actors. You’ll be laughing throughout and you’ll find it hard to think of many other films from this year which you can have as much fun with. What’s even better though is the fact that ‘The Nice Guys’ isn’t a sequel, franchise film, spin-off or reboot it’s just good old fashioned original film and it doesn’t get much better than this!
Rating – 9/10
Question: What is your favourite Shane Black film or screenplay?
(Leave your answers in the comments section below!)
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