“The Nice Guys” is co-written & directed by Shane Black who also pulled double duty for films like “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”, “Iron Man 3” & “The Predator”. Black is also known for his portrayal of “Hawkins” in the 1989 film, “Predator”. The film stars Russell Crowe, Ryan Gosling, Angourie Rice, Matt Bomer, Margaret Qualley, Keith David & Kim Basinger. Robert Downey Jr. also has an uncredited role in the film as a film producer.
After an adult film actress is killed in 1977 Los Angeles, another actress, Amelia (Qualley) enlist the help of man who hurts people for a living, Jackson Healy (Crowe) to protect her from a mysterious man. That man is actually a private investigator, Holland March (Gosling) is hired to find out what happen to the previous actress. These 2 guys soon discover they’re after the same thing as their investigation leads down a world of trouble involving corruption within major car companies, adult filmmakers, the Department of Justice & a slew of powerful business men like Eddie Harris (David), & hitman, John Boy (Boomer). Healy must protect Amelia at all cost while March tries to tie it all together.
This was a damn near perfect buddy cop movie. Crowe and Gosling were excellent, great performances, great storytelling and visuals. Black really captured the look of L.A. in the 70s. Not as good as Tarantino’s “Once Upon Time in Hollywood”, but close enough for this film. I think the entire cast was great support around the 2 leads. Even Angourie Rice was great for child actors playing against 2 Academy Award winners. Very similar to Hailee Steinfeld in “True Grit”. It has all the cliches and tropes of a typical buddy cop movie, no different from the “Lethal Weapon” series or even 2 “Jump St.” films but its the amazing chemistry between the 2 leads that standout.
Overall, this was a fantastic film from beginning to end and everything in between. Shane Black’s masterful filmmakers shines in his area of expertise, comedy with 2 actors who aren’t recognized in comedy but have great chemistry and have balance with the comedic timing and dramatic scenes. Much like “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” with Robert Downey Jr. and Val Kilmer, “The Nice Guys” will go down as underrated classic with phenomenal comedic performances from 2 great actors who primarily known for their dramatic work.