The Masked Mom household is enrolled in Blockbuster Online--it's like Netflix, which all the cool families have, only not cool simply by virtue of the fact that I'm a member. Anyway, the way it works is you have a queue of movies you want to see and when you send back one movie you get the next one from your list. With six people in the household, all of whom have the password for the account, some weird things end up in the queue and because the queue is so long, sometimes it takes a while to get something you want and, by then, you might have no idea that you wanted it.
Consequently, sometimes movies show up in the mailbox that absolutely no one in the house wants to take credit/blame for*. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang was one of those movies. The description on the wrapper (as always) was cut off mid-way through and the part that was included seemed none too promising, but it seemed stupid to send it back without at least giving it a try.
No one was in any hurry to try it, though, which is how the best movie I've seen all year ended up sitting on top of the entertainment stand for a week and a half, unseen by anyone. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, described as an "offbeat action comedy" on the Blockbuster site, stars Robert Downey, Jr. and Val Kilmer as accidental partners trying to solve a murder. It's full of memorable one-liners (and lots of foul language--at the end of the movie, Val Kilmer's character even says, "...and to all you good people in the Midwest, sorry we said fuck so much.") and scenes in which both Val Kilmer and Robert Downey, Jr.'s talents are used to great advantage. I realize they've both had a spotty record** in the acting department, but as far as I'm concerned, they were perfect in these roles and this movie redeems any misjudgments in their pasts.
Word of warning: it's definitely not for everyone. There is a lot of violence, most of it is not graphic, but there are a few "ewwww" moments. And, as both Val and I mentioned, lots of swear words. But if you like dark comedy--think Grosse Pointe Blank or The Ice Harvest, but dial them both up a couple of notches--it's one you don't want to miss.
Another sort of warning: I laughed so hard that by the end of the movie, I had a headache. You might want to pop a few ibuprofen and head your headache off at the pass.
Masked Mom One-Word Review: Hysterical.
*Partway through the movie, I vaguely remembered reading an interview in Esquire (or maybe it was GQ) in which the interviewer described this role as some of Val Kilmer's best work ever. So, maybe, just maybe, I was the one who put it in the queue. Wow, confession really is good for the soul.
**When I told Baby Brother that this was the best role I'd ever seen Val Kilmer in, he smirked, "Better than Batman, even?"
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