As the calendar creeps quickly towards Christmas Day on the 25th of December, we’re counting down the days with a special advent calendar of festive films, revealing a set of rare images for each chosen film to surprise and delight film fans.

If I were to make a list of underrated films that should have gotten their dues upon initial release, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang would be right up there with Brick, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, and Brazil. After years of honing his craft with writing snarky buddy cop pictures like Lethal Weapon and The Last Boy Scout, Shane Black took the next logical step…he wrote AND directed one, resulting in the film we’re about to relive here today. Though it was Black’s first time directing, you could tell he’s been around the game long enough to know what he’s doing. The film looks as good as the dialogue sounds, and that is all thanks to the cracker jack trio of Val Kilmer, Michelle Monaghan, and (naturally) Robert Downey Jr. as our unreliable narrator/unlikely hero.

Now it’s on the Advent Calendar because, like Die Hard before it, it’s a movie that just happens to take place at Christmas, but doesn’t really focus on the holiday front and center. Sure there’s some holiday gags here and there, but focus is mostly on the tale of a snarky thief who lucked into an acting gig, which then leads him to stumble into a gig as a Private Detective. As with any good noir flicks worth their salt, it’s a dame that kicks off the case and it’s a dame that is the case, with the end result being a messy (but effective) detective’s quest.

Here now are 10 images you’ve never seen, at least not in the way you’re about to see them…

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This article was first posted on December 8, 2012