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To mark the release of The Nice Guys, a torrent of concentrated awesome for Shane Black fans, I cited the five moments from Shane Black movies that most perfectly represent what he offers cinema in this blog for the Herald.

At the outset of my recent conversation with Russell Crowe about his new film The Nice Guys, I told him that I was a giant fan of its writer/director Shane Black. Crowe responded by saying that The Nice Guys is “about as Shane Black as it gets”.

He’s not wrong. For fans of the kind of witty, agile action films that Shane Black perfected with his screenplays for Lethal Weapon, The Last Boy Scout, The Long Kiss Goodnight and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (which he also directed), The Nice Guys is pure catnip.

It gets away with a kind of violent gallows humor that many action films aspire to without success. Black is a master of this kind of thing, and it’s super gratifying to see him getting to make the kinds of films he wants to make following the major success of Iron Man III, his career comeback.