May 20, 2016, 5:41 AM
Shane Black films are unmistakably Shane Black films, with crackling dialogue, relentless action, and tough guys cut from a decidedly retro cloth. In “The Nice Guys,” which he directed, and co-wrote with Anthony Bagarozzi, that cloth is the kind of polyester that might make up a late-’70s leisure suit. While Black’s films are always deeply influenced by his appreciation for pulp noir detective fiction, “The Nice Guys” is one of the purest expressions of Black’s aesthetic, a bloody, hilarious, convoluted mystery that’s as funny as it’s dark. And, in Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling, Black has found two perfectly suited nice guys who can also crack wise all over 1977 Los Angeles.