Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Film Review No. 14 The Nice Guys (15+)

Strong Points:
Twists and turns
Great acting from the two mains
Great 70's style
Some great uses of lighting, sudden changes and pauses
Actual depth to the characters
Slowly unfolds the story allowing you to work things out...

Weak Points:
... But can be confusing at the beginning
Message is lost in chaos
Supporting actors aren't quite as detailed as the main three
Can get slightly gratuitous

Some spoilers ahead:

In-depth Review:

The Nice Guys is a dark buddy comedy starring Russel Crowe and Ryan Gosling. It's set in the 1970's and the main premise is that Holland Marsh (Gosling) and Jackson Healy (Crowe) are looking for Amelia (Margaret Qualley) who has run away for *spoilers*. However, that's not the only plot point as many twists appear along the way with characters changing status and character points unfolding.

To help this story unfold we have the comedy of the film (and lots of it!) in varying types. You have your plain and simple one liners, your crude humour, your black humour, your physical humour and your cringe humour. The comedy also varies in quality of course, from the laugh-out-loud bathroom sequence to the slightly crude 'thought that women was actually a table top'. Overall though, the film managed to get plenty of laughs out of me, mostly due to the superb acting of the main cast.

Seeing Javert punching that guy from The Notebook is basically the tone of the film, but the chemistry between Crowe and Gosling is great as it turns from fear to begrudging respect for each other. Their reactions to the things going on are top notch and reveal interesting backstories which are sadly barely explored. One particular example is when Marsh is drunk and sits down by a tree to have a cigarette. The flame shows an... interesting sight, out of view from Marsh and when he finally realises, the quickness of his actions (practically jumping out of his skin) and his garbled speech helps to generate the fear while keeping it comedic. Got to give credit to the camera crew for that particular scene as well.

Sadly, the supporting cast isn't quite as good as the main cast (besides Angourie Rice who plays the 13-year-old daughter of Marsh and excellently plays the smarter-than-her-dad character). They're not bad mind you, just not quite as capable as the main two and it's a shame some of their storylines weren't explored as much as the main cast as it could've given them the chance to shine.

Plenty of style in this film and, with it being set in the neon lit streets of 70's America, who wouldn't expect it to be (even with a couple of time inconsistencies). The streets are alive, the cars are all fancy and the costumes are, well, unique to say the least. Musically the film is great and helps to set the tone as well.

Conclusion: overall, this film is a great buddy comedy albeit one you may not want to watch with your family.

Rating: 77%

Thanks for reading, Satamer.

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