I've been thinking about it ever since and the first thing that strikes me is now jarring the tone of the film is. Set in the LA of the 70's everything looks very glitzy and colorful but it's all overcast with smog.
And that right there tells me something else is going on. Something I need to pay more attention to.
Because the movie itself breezes along: I am hard pressed to think of a film that moves so quickly from beat to beat. It's not relentless, in the way that a film like The Raid is, it doesn't have the intensity of Mad Max but it also never slows down. This is a bit unusual: when I think of Lethal Weapon or The Long Kiss Goodnight, or Iron Man 3, those movies had character building moments that were plot-distinct. (I really need to see Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang again to see how that works).
The Nice Guys doesn't really do this. Or let me restate this: It doesn't do this in a way where those details become relevant. It actually flips this: those details don't seem to matter.
And I don't think Black makes movies like that.
Another little bit: Throughout the film, Crowe's character refuses to drink, while his partner (Gosling) drinks with fervor. Gosling's drinking has consequences-although those are mostly played for laughs, there are consequences. At the end of the movie; Crowe's character is drinking a fifth of whiskey. From the bottle.
Again: This movie takes the characters on a journey, gives them rewards and the consequences are reasonably negative. However, not completely: two loners now are friends.
So...I'm not sure what to do with this movie and that makes me more curious about it.