"This isn't good cop, bad cop. This is fag and New Yorker."
In Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Shane Black's entertaining 2005 comedy thriller, HARRY LOCKHART (a pre-Iron Man Robert Downey Jr.) is a hapless petty thief from New York City who's mistaken for an actor by a Hollywood producer casting a detective movie. Before you can say A Thrill a Minute With Jack Albany, the producer ships him off to Los Angeles for a screen test to play a hard-boiled private detective in an upcoming production.
Harry gets teamed up with the film's technical adviser, real-life hard-boiled private eye PERRY van SHRIKE, aka "GAY PERRY" (Val Kilmer), to prep him for his screen test.
Perry is the real deal, hard, cynical and bitter and -- oh yeah --gay. He wants nothing to do with Harry, who he's convinced isn't the brightest crayon in the box. But Perry gets roped in when Harmony Faith Lane (Michelle Monaghan), an actress who's read way too many pulp detective novels featuring Jonny Gossamer, a fictitious hard-boiled private eye, asks Harry to look into her sister's suicide.
From this point on, hilarity and thrills ensue, against
Shane Black, of course, is no stranger to that particular combo -- or mismatched detectives, having scripted such popular action comedies as The Last Boy Scout, Lethal Weapon and The Long Kiss Goodnight. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang marks his directorial debut. He says the script was partially based on the Mike Shayne novel Bodies Are Where You Find Them by Brett Halliday. Furthermore, he says he read several stories by Raymond Chandler when writing it, which resulted in the story being divided into chapters, each bearing a title lifted from Chandler's works. An added bonus is the way black cheerfully inverts every cliche in the crime flick playbook, including a few he's been responsible for over the years.
Black, hot off scripting Weapon, reportedly received an unprecedented (for the time) $1,750,000 for the screenplay of Boy Scout, and a few years later a whopping $4,000,000 for Long Kiss. Some of us are obviously in the wrong racket.
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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