Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005)

While on the run from the law, petty crook Harry Lockhart (Robert Downey Jr.) stumbles into a film audition - and get's the part! In order to prepare for the role, Harry must follow around Detective Gay Pary (Val Kilmer) and soon the two find themselves caught up in a real Hollywood murder mystery.

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In the late 80's Shane Black was the fucking MAN. After the success of his first script (Lethal Weapon), the money was rolling in. But after the colossal flop of The Long Kiss Goodnight, Hollywood moved on to the next flavor of the month. To some this might be devastating. For some this might be suicide time. But for Black, it became insanely freeing.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is a glorious poison pen letter to Los Angeles and Hollywood. Through writing and directing this film, Black was able to let loose all of his built up venom for the town he calls home. Although he takes shots at the chic clubs, the stupid parties, the executives, the wannabes, etc. his main focus is on the emotionally damaged women of Los Angeles and more importantly the men who damaged them and the men who take advantage of that damage. Through his characters, Shane Black gets to right wrongs.

Though the comparisons to The Big Lebowski are understandable (what with the abundance of crazy characters, the overly intricate/inconsequential plot, clever dialogue and Los Angeles setting) it  is not entirely apt. As fun as both films are, Lebowski carries very little emotional resonance. Like most Coen Brothers films, it boils down to 'much ado about nothing'. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang on the other hand, has a lot on its' mind. And over the course of the film, it ALL gets out. But...ya know...with laughter.

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