30 Movies in 30 Days: The Nice Guys

Had I seen it before: I saw it when it was in theaters, but not since.

Year: 2016

Director: Shane Black

Writers: Shane Black and Anthony Bagarozzi

Where you can stream it now: HBO

What IMDb says: In 1970s Los Angeles, a mismatched pair of private eyes investigate a missing girl and the mysterious death of a porn star.

Why I picked it: I remember really, really loving this movie in theaters, and I’m kind of disappointed in myself for not re-watching it since. When I saw it was on HBO, I figured it was time to fix that.

What I liked: This movie has absolutely zero tonal issues when it very easily could have. There’s just this impeccable sense for which moments should be funny, which moments should be action, and which moments should be about the plot. Ryan Gosling, Russel Crowe, and Angourie Rice gel together quite nicely. All three have great comedic timing, but can seamlessly shift into perilous fear or lurid curiosity depending on what the story calls for.

It’s also one of the most well-paced movies I can remember seeing in a while. Each new development in the case takes odd, unexpected turns but yet I never felt like I was trying to so hard to keep up with the plot that the movie wasn’t fun anymore. I was able to simultaneously enjoy what was happening in the here and now while also being excited to see what the next unexpected twist might be.

Overall, The Nice Guys is just a really FUN way to spend 2 hours. It knows what it wants to be, and it freaking nails it.

What I didn’t like: I actually can’t really think of anything.

Will I watch it again: Probably. I can even see myself buying a *gasp* PHYSICAL COPY once it leaves streaming platforms.

Who would enjoy it: People who love movies that mix comedy and action. Think Tarantino, but with a more straightforward, conventional story structure.

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