Wednesday, August 12, 2015


Caught up with Paul Thomas Anderson's 2014 film Inherent Vice last evening, and was seduced by it's strangeness and terrific ensemble cast (including Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, Katherine Waterston and Benicio del Toro). Based on the 2009 novel by Thomas Pynchon, the movie is certainly in a genre of its own - a free-form stoner comedy noir set within the immediate paranoia of post-Manson LA in 1970 (where police were treating the gathering of more than three youths in one spot as a potential cult). It's one of those movies that will frustrate viewers looking for a easy narrative plot, but if you let yourself just get drawn into it, and lost within its familiar but off-kilt world, you can come out the end feeling rewarded for having stayed the two-and-a-half hour distance.
For me, Anderson has never come close to matching the brilliance of this sophomore film, Boogie Nights (1997), but Inherent Vice is certainly another worthy addition to the director's solid filmography.