‘Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang’ Review: Is There Such A Thing as Noir-Comedy?

Posted in The Screening Room by - January 03, 2015

First off, I hope all of our readers had a fantastic holiday, and congratulations to all of you haven’t messed up their New Year Resolutions by the 2nd day of the year! For January we decided to do something a little different. Our fearless leader and Editor-in-Chief, Chris Stachiw, asked all of the writers to submit their Top 5 favorite films. Chris and I then combed through about 30 films and created a list of 19 films that Chris and I will be reviewing through out the month.

Our first entry comes from Jack von Albade. Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang is a crime-comedy film from 2005, written and directed by Shane Black, the same Shane Black that wrote Lethal Weapon and would later direct Iron Man 3, and stars Robert Downey, Jr. and Val Kilmer. The script is partially based on the Brett Halliday novel Bodies Are Where You Find Them, and interprets the classic hardboiled literary genre in a tongue-in-cheek fashion.

The film starts at a big L.A./Hollywood party where Harry Lockhart, played by Robert Downey, Jr., recounts the recent events that landed him at this party. Fleeing a botched burglary that ends with Harry’s friend being shot, Harry evades the police by ducking into an audition. In this audition, Harry unintentionally impresses the producers with an outburst of remorse that they mistake for method acting. Normally, I’m opposed to narration, however, in this case it provides a level comedic relief where I can forgive this cinema sin.

Granted this film turns 10 years old this year, for those that haven’t seen in, I will try and keep this review as spoiler free as possible. Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang is a fantastic film that didn’t gain as much success as it probably should have here in the states. Granted Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang was released 3 years prior to RDJ’s blockbuster hit Iron Man the film’s distribution during release steadily grew every weekend as it gained more and more favorable reviews.

The highlight of this film is RDJ’s and Kilmer’s on-screen chemistry. Their quick wit and playful banter throughout the whole movie allow the film to maintain a balance between comedy and crime-drama that makes for an extraordinarily enjoyable movie. If you haven’t seen Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang, I suggest you find a copy and give it a watch.

Final Say: Watch It

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