Thursday, March 02, 2017

"Nice" Is Not The Same As "Smart", Or "Competent"

So the same night I saw Doctor Strange, after we got back from one of Alex' shows, we watched The Nice Guys. I've seen several good reviews, except that one guy who thinks Ryan Gosling's a terrible actor (I'm not sure I've seen enough of Gosling to form an opinion).

Gosling's an alcoholic private detective and lousy father trying to find a woman named Amelia. He was hired by a lady who insists her niece (an adult film star we see die at the beginning of the film) is still alive, and Amelia is who he suspects the lady saw. Amelia doesn't know why she's being sought out, and hires Russell Crowe's character, who is a sort of low-grade professional thug to dissuade the person doing the seeking. But then other parties show up looking for Amelia, and Crowe and Gosling ultimately team up. There's a hired killer lurking everyone calls John Boy, because he has a mole on his face like the character on The Waltons (the movie is set in the late '70s).

It's very funny, although as Alex noted, I kept waiting for them to do something cool at given moments, only for them to foul it up. Gosling's character in particular. A lot of that is self-inflicted, alcoholism fueled by grief, self-loathing, self-pity. It's easier to not care, not try, as an excuse for failure. Crowe's character is just lonely, trying to find some direction. Wants to do the right thing, has a limited range of skills, which limits his options on how to do it. Things don't necessarily work out on this particular case, but in the longterm it helps both of them.

Oh, probably should mention, as the plot involves the adult film industry, there's a fair amount of nudity, fyi. But it is funny, and I think it does what it wanted to do well. I need to watch it some time when I'm more alert, rather than 3 in the morning.

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