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Kiss Kiss Bang Bang [Blu-ray]
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Durante el robo a una juguetería de Nueva York, Harry y su socio son descubiertos y en la huída, Harry entra por error en un casting para una película de detectives. Para su sorpresa es seleccionado y sin saber muy bien cómo se encuentra via Los Angeles para realizar una prueba. Para completar su formación le asignan a un auténtico detective, el duro Perry an Shrike, que intentará que Harry parezca un detective. En esos momentos se cruza en su vida Faith Lane, una aspirante a actriz que necesita su ayuda. El suicidio de la hermana de Harmony se cruza con el caso que están investigando Harry y Perry y que aparentemente no tiene que ver. Llegados a esta situación Harry necesitará la ayuda de Perry para convertirse en el héroe de Harmony resolviendo el caso.
Harry Lockhart (Robert Downey Jr.) es en esencia un tipo decente. Es cierto que es un ladrón de poca monta que va por la vida con una mezcla no muy sólida de encanto desfasado y optimismo inconsciente, pero quiere hacer lo correcto. Sólo que no sabe exactamente cómo. La eterna mala suerte de Harry empieza a mejorar cuando él y su socio están haciendo algunas "compras" navideñas fuera de horas en una tienda de juguetes de Nueva York y la alarma de seguridad acaba con la fiesta. En su frenética huida de la policía, Harry se ve metido sin querer en una audición para una película de detectives de Hollywood y, en un abrir y cerrar de ojos, el productor lo lleva en avión a Los Angeles para hacerle una prueba...
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Val Kilmer cast against type is phenomenal.
Downey Jr. plays Harry Lockhart, a professional burgler and narrator of 'Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang'. Through bizarre (and unlikely) circumstance Harry is hired to play the role of a police detective for a film and is introduced to "Gay" Perry (Kilmer), a private investigator. After running into a former high school crush at a Hollywood party, Harry and Perry get mixed up in a mystery involving frame-ups, mistaken identities and murder. While the story has all the characters and fixings of a detective story (a rich, shady producer; two strong-arm thugs) it's really a mess of ideas thrown together and the tone keeps changing from snarky comedy to dark-drama-mystery on the fly. 'Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang' also wants you to know it's clever by having Harry break the fourth-wall and point out the film's inconsistencies; I don't mind a film wanting to be self-aware but I found it's obviousness unbearably annoying.
So why do I enjoy this film? When this movies' funny it's FUNNY! From Perry's "concealed" gun to Harry's disastrous attempt to intimidate a "suspect" with Russian roulette 'Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang' had me bursting out laughing when I least expected it. It's this unpredictable nature that kept me hooked that so, when the film did something I hated or drowned on with it's out-of-place seriousness I knew it had some perfectly timed comedy right around the corner.
As I've said 'Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang' would be nothing without it's main characters and Robert Downey Jr. and Val Kilmer deliver some of the best performances of their careers. Harry's likeably dopey and Downey Jr.'s rapid-fire delivery makes him self-assured in his sometimes ignorance. Kilmer's tough-as-nails portrayal of Gay Perry is refreshing and his back and forth dialogue with Downey ("where the hell did you learn math?") is a scream. Michelle Monaghan is likeable as Harry's high-school crush and Corbin Bersen is perfectly smarmy as the shady movie producer but they're completely overshadowed by our main detectives.
'Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang' is my ultimate guilty pleasure. I can't recommend it for everyone as it's annoyances are many and it's self-aware cleverness can put-off as much as it entertains. But I cant deny I enjoyed watching this movie and it still manages to make me laugh after all this time.
Maybe it's because the movie itself is so unexpectedly quirky from beginning to end, full of characters your gut tells you aren't that likable, but nonetheless you like them. They grow on you quickly from a botched burglary to an accidentally spectacular movie audition, all in the first 5 minutes.
So goes the rest of the movie at a breakneck speed, with the occasional rewind as the narrating burglar, Downey, berating himself for failing to tell an important point of the story. The gist of the story is this: Harry (Downey) is flown out to Los Angeles to supposedly begin research for his inadvertantly won role, tutored by a gay private detective (Val Kilmer) who works part time for the studios. There Harry meets, Harmony, the girl he grew up with, precariously perched on the edge of a small town girl gone wrong in her running away to Hollywood. From that point on begins the impossibly fast downhill roll of murder, plots, confusion, love, and so on.
The thing that makes this formulaic sounding idea completely different in its spit in the wind take on cliches. Kilmer's detective, known as Gay Perry, is not a gay stereotype. When Harry wakes up the morning after meeting his old girlfriend, the girl in his bed isn't her, it's her obnoxious friend. All seemingly good plans go wrong, both by the criminal element and the quasi-good guy Harry, et al. Just as you think you're getting a handle on what's going on, it takes another twisting turn. The ending isn't picture perfect, though some characters lives have improved, they aren't exactly where they wanted to be.
The acting is spectacular, particularly Downey. You cannot watch this movie and be unimpressed by his craft. Kilmer is solid and restrained, making his character believably gay yet masculine. You believe his Hollywood nickname of Gay Perry as more than a play on words; it might just be to remind everybody that his character IS gay and it's a non-issue for the most part. The supporting characters all have perfect dark comedic timing. It's one great big slap at all the overdone cliches, some of which were developed by the Lethal Weapon movies that writer and director Shane Black made. It takes a brave director to take whacks at himself.
All in all, a terrifically dark humored movie with no delusions of grandeur. Plus there are little 'in' jokes, such as Indio Downey, Robert Downey's look-alike son playing young Harry. Or an old clip of Corbin Bernson pre-L.A. Law used to identify his present time character with the convoluted past of Harmony and a movie shoot in their hometown when she was young. Most subtle was Harry having a rather nasty injury requiring him to be prescribed a heavy duty painkiller... and the character of Harry slurringly stating that he was fine, just a little woozy, and would be completely okay after two more pills.