This film was the model of how the buddy-comedy genre is done properly with a fun story and even more entertaining characters.
“THE NICE GUYS” stars Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling as a couple of private investigators who definitely have different techniques to their work. In 1970’s Los Angeles, their lives are brought together when a porn-star is murdered and the case leads them across the city searching for answers.
There is no denying this is one of the better buddy comedies I have seen in many years. If you were a fan of Shane Black’s “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” then you will most likely love this script. I will be honest I am not the biggest Russell Crowe or Ryan Gosling fan, they are excellent performers (still on the fence with Gosling) but I haven’t overly enjoyed their films. But I absolutely loved both of them in this movie, they nailed their performances and they both make a unique story, even more entertaining.
The writing was great and while I was laughing throughout, there wasn’t a ton of jokes, but a lot of hilarious dialogue and situational comedy. The funniest moments in this film to me were the ones where they didn’t appear to be trying for a laugh and when done properly I think this brand of comedy his pure fun. The story takes many twists and turns and keeps the viewer involved with an excellent balance of dialogue that focused perfectly on both humor and plot progression.
Crowe and Gosling were both fantastic, they had excellent chemistry and despite the characters being way over-the-top in certain things, they were still grounded enough so I could connect with them. Crowe was entertaining as the rough throwback to the stereotypical action hero persona and his subtle comedic delivery was absolutely effective. Gosling was surprisingly amusing as a clumsy P.I. that is good at his job, without really looking like he’s good at it.
The two personalities blend well throughout this film and it helps keep the laughs fresh. This story-line pulled me in from the start and held my attention with a story, and cast of characters I was interested in seeing evolve. It also must be noted the performance of young Angourie Rice was extremely good. For a young actress to come in with some big names in Hollywood and deliver a performance that validated her being on screen with them must be acknowledged.
She delivered some laughs as well and also showed a great chemistry with both Gosling and Crowe. In particular Gosling who played her father, who would from time to time would come to her to help him with his work. This dynamic between them was comical as well as she at times felt like his mother rather than daughter.
“The Nice Guys” was the surprise hit of the summer for me so far and easily the best comedy of the season. The material was fresh, nothing felt overly borrowed, the laughs are never forced and the level of quality was high in many elements, and make this a must-see.
Time: 116 min
MPAA Rating: R (For violence, sexuality, nudity, language and brief drug use)