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The Nice Guys

In what is a combination of a “buddy-cop” movie and film noir (like Chinatown), Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling play two detectives, Jackson and Holland, who team up to solve a murder after their paths cross while looking for the same woman. Holland is a kind of a “hit man” who gets slipped some bucks from people to threaten their adversaries (brass knuckles figure a lot into his daily work). Jackson is an alcoholic private eye with daughter who is 13. The movie works for a couple of key reasons. The dialog is taut and really, really funny – there are laughs throughout the movie – and the action is nearly non-stop. The chemistry between Gosling and Crowe is amazing – the two of them play off of each other really well as they bumble their way through solving the crime. The daughter figures pretty heavily in the story, and it could have been rather hokey, but it actually works. Thumbs up for a very entertaining movie that provided a lot of laughs. There is a fair amount of violence; think Pulp Fiction or John Wick as slapstick when deciding whether you should see this. Also, given the end of the film, it appears there may be sequels.  (2016; 3.5 Stars)

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