Look on the bright side. Nobody got hurt.
People got hurt.
The Nice Guys is some kind of brilliant; it’s pure gold. It’s centered on the relationship between Ryan Gosling’s wastrel PI and Russell Crowe’s brutish enforcer and if that’s not enough to get you in the door, you clearly do not understand the concept of joy. The film goes farther than it would have to in a lot of directions. A movie based on the interplay of these two characters could have been light on plot, but it actually functions as a compelling mystery, with a lot of nice plot twist moments. And the setting is glorious; the production designer, costumer & whoever else was involved with this element of the film knock it right out of the park by absolutely evoking the glitz and sleaze of the seventies to perfection. Great soundtrack, of course. The script is incredibly funny, packed with great one-liners and even better banter. Shane Black packs the film with reliable character actors who are all basically brilliant. Ty Simpkins has a great cameo. Beau Knapp is all electric energy and twitchy hilariousness as a psycho killer named Blue Face for reasons that you’ll probably figure out pretty quickly. Margaret Qually is brilliant as the rebellious girl at the heart of the conspiracy. Angourie Rice is nothing short of fantastic in a scene-stealing turn as Gosling’s precocious daughter; keep an eye out – you’ll be seeing her again in an unspecified role in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Here’s hoping the MCU actually gives her a chance to do some great work; she’s certainly capable. Matt Bomer is absolutely wonderful as an ice-cold killer from out of town; the movie does a great job building up his character and when he finally arrives, he doesn’t disappoint. In case you can’t tell, I really loved this movie. It’s a movie that excels in every way. When it wants to be funny, it’s hilarious; when it wants to be suspenseful, it’s nail-biting; when it wants to be surprising, it’s brilliant; when it wants to be touching, it’s poignant. Performances, humor, plotting, design; The Nice Guys is a mystery-comedy-action-thriller that never disappoints. It’s a film as purely enjoyable as any I’ve seen this year; it’s a movie that just gave me a real buzz of happiness while I was watching it. It’s a joyous experience in every way. 4 stars.
tl;dr – great performances with great chemistry, a brilliant script that perfectly balances suspense, action & comedy; this adds up to one of the most purely entertaining films of the year. 4 stars.