Thursday, May 19, 2016

The Nice Guys Review - 2½ Stars

“The Nice Guys” pays tribute to the kind of detective movies Hollywood made in the 1970’s, riffing on the great film noir movies of the 1940’s. This story gets a boost, pairing Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling, two hapless private eyes working way above their pay grade. The story centers on porn stars, big business and the dirty smog-choked world of the LA in the 70’s. One of the best elements of “The Nice Guys” is the use of still available locations, to establish the time frame. The boys roar around town in their 1960’s autos, past car dealers and coffee shops and hotels with glass elevators that view the horizon. The entire story is filmed through a haze of pot smoke and smog, set to 70’s music. Gosling lets his teenaged daughter tag along, giving young Angourie Rice some hilarious bits.  I think this is her first movie and I can't wait to see what she does next.  “The Nice Guys” made a mistake putting the movie's best gags in the trailer. They didn’t leave much to surprise us. The plot revolves around the auto show and a court case and the search for the daughter of justice department official Kim Basinger. A couple of big scenes, including a porn star party, devolve into chaos and don’t advance the story. If “The Nice Guys” succeeds, we might see a sequel or two from these days. With a little focusing and tightening, that might be a good idea. Does it deliver what it promises? Old school private eye “R” rated comedy. Is it entertaining? Funny at times, but most of the funniest bits are in the trailer. Is it worth the price of admission? You could do worse.