Analysis of Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang

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Lucía Sánchez Estremé CTA II, 2º Estudios Ingleses Comedy Noir The clip which I am going to analyze belongs to the movie Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (Shane Black, 2005). The film is about Harry Lockhart (Robert Downey, Jr.), a petty thief who is mistaken for an actor and sent to Hollywood where he meets the private detective Perry Van Shirke, known as “Gay” Perry (Val Kilmer) and Harmony Faith Lane (Michelle Monaghan), his teenage love. They will get involved in a series of murders and mysteries. The movie is separated in days, in this essay I will deal with the first day “Trouble is my business”, the set up of the movie. I will focus in how this particular kind of narrator is imitating the subjectivity of film noir and parodies it using irony. The film uses the resource of a voice-over internal narrator who is the protagonist, Harry Lockhart. He tells the story from outside of the story time, when the narrator is talking the story has already ended. Nevertheless, he is a restricted narrator because he only knows his part of the story and he does not know what are the thoughts or feelings of other characters. Bedsides the fact that he is a restricted narrator creates subjectivity, we only knows what he tells us and the fact that he includes personal opinions in his narration increase the subjectivity. Moreover the voice-over is also a way to manipulate the audience, identifying what the narrator is saying with the thoughts of the character at that moment of the story. In a way the voice-over contaminates the main character and adds subjectivity to the story. The subjectivity is a common feature of the film noir and it is present during the introduction of all the characters and their world. But the description is not only subjective but also ironic. The irony of the narrator in the presentation of the characters is the way that the film has to parody them, they are
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