Film Review – Inherent Vice


From the brains behind Boogie Nights and There Will Be Blood – Paul Thomas Anderson – comes the weirdest film of 2015 so far. Not counting the space-tacular Jupiter Ascending.

Inherent Vice, based on the 2009 novel of the same name by Thomas Pynchon, Doc – aka Larry Sportello played by the always in form Joaquin Phoenix is a Private Detective. At least that’s what we are able to deduce via a series of bizarre events and voiceovers, flashbacks and convoluted plot developments that form the backbone of this film. I pride myself on being endowed with a bright mind, certainly not an intellectual, however this film was a bit much for me to follow.

Chain-smoking joints in between hits on a NO2 tank and many cans of beers, Doc must be one of the loosest units to appear on screen. On the hunt for a missing businessman, he uncovers a web of deception that entangles the local LAPD (Josh Brolin as Lt. Det. Christian F. “Bigfoot” Bjornsen), the FBI, an insane asylum, neo-Nazi bikies, international drug syndicates, a rogue dentist (Martin Short as Dr. Rudy Blatnoyd, D.D.S.), hippy chicks, complicated saxophone players (Owen Wilson as Coy Harlingen) and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
It’s very funny, extremely twisted and ultimately a warped affair.
At almost 2 & 1/2 hours a number of people walked out before the end, but I was keen to see how the story could possibly be neatly wrapped up. If you want to know how it all ends then I encourage you to stick it out. The cast look they are having an absolute ball, but it’s not up there with Anderson’s more coherent work.
3 Stars.
This trailer gives you a taste of what you’d be up for..

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