KISS KISS BANG BANG Friday 14 October, 2011

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The buddy comedy. We’ve all seen them and we’ve all got bored of them. Or have we? This often overlooked film shows us that there is life in the old dog(s) yet.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is directed by Shane Black. Heard of him? Probably not but you will have heard of some films he wrote and most likely you will have seen them too.  Shane Black is the mind behind Lethal Weapon (1-4 inclusive), The Last Boy Scout and The Last Action Hero.  I guess he didn’t get bored of buddy films.

If you’ve seen the film it probably won’t come as any great surprise that the writer and director is responsible for those films. This is an action comedy with two strong male leads who are at one with the wisecrack. So far so boring. The special ingredients that make this film soar above the rest of the field are Val Kilmer, Robert Downey Jr and the spellbinding chemistry between the two of them.

Given how well these two work as a double act I am very surprised that we have never been given another chance to watch it.  The chemistry between the two leads lends the dialogue another twenty percent in the excellence scale.  It also gives us an insight into just how important the actor is.  I think that same lines of dialogue would have been far from enjoyable had two lesser actors been trying to wrap their faces around it.

So what of the story?  It’s a fun take on the private eye story with Downey Jr’s hapless crook being tutored by Kilmer’s PI coach. Michelle monaghan is excellent as well and allowed to show more sass than she does in the rom-com fare that she is usually mired in. I have to admit that this film made me fall head over heels for her but that aside her performance is pitch perfect.

There are some real belly laughs waiting for you in this film, some great action and snappy dialogue in a buddy film that is easily on par with Midnight Run. High but deserved praise.

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