The Safe Guys


Title: The Nice Guys

Rating: 3 Stars

I like intricately plotted crime movies. I like comedy. I liked the previews. I grew up in the 1970’s (when the movie was set). I was set to love the movie, but at the end, …meh…

It wasn’t bad. There were several scenes that made me laugh. There was good chemistry between Jackson (Russell Crowe) and Holland (Ryan Gosling). Holly (Angourie Rice), who played Gosling’s daughter, was also very good.

My main problem was the lack of subtlety. It was pretty obvious who the ‘bad guy’ was. There was the usual many thousands of rounds fired impossibly from one gun that miraculously manages to always miss our heroes. Somewhere on the cutting room floor they must have made some more use of the fact that Holland does not have a sense of sense other than to give him a reason for his pathos. Although both Jackson and Holland behave at various times in amoral if not immoral ways, the film always makes clear that they both have a ‘good heart’.

Overall, it just gave off a sense of being a safe, main-stream, big studio movie. Within that narrow spectrum, it was fine. I was entertained. I felt no desire to demand my money back.

However, with Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling both in good form, and with Shane Black as the director (he also directed the awesome Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (an awesome buddy / crime movie) and wrote two of my unexpected happy surprises, The Long Kiss Goodnight and The Last Action Hero), it could have been and should have been so much more.


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