Inherent Vice *****


Run Time: 148mins           Cert: 15

Synopsis: In 1970, drug-fueled Los Angeles detective Larry “Doc” Sportello (Phoenix) investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend (Waterston).

After the disappointing The Master, Paul Thomas Anderson returns to form with an adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s 2009 supposedly unfilmable novel.

The term “Inherent Vice” refers to “the tendency in physical objects to deteriorate because of the fundamental instability of the components of which they are made, as opposed to deterioration caused by external forces”
Close in tone and story to the classic Chinatown and Big Lebowsi. In that the film is your run by the mill detective story told from the protagonists point of view, but with messed up characters and a twisted plot line. Not every storyline ties together, but it is so well orchestrated and so much fun that at the end of the day it does not really matter.

Anderson has always worked with an amazing list of actors and here is no exception. Martin Short, Reese Witherspoon, Josh Brolin and Benecio Del Toro all bringing something to the table.

Joaquin Phoenix puts on a phenomenal performance. Disguised in giant sideburns,  sunglasses and a panama hat, he completely disappears into character throughout the movie. While his onscreen lost love, Shasta Fay Hepworth, played Katherine Waterston is a startlingly revelation bringing a much needed innocence to a time that appears to have forgotten or lost all hope.

Match this with stunning visuals and a mind enduring score by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood and this film comes across as something quite special.

Reviewed by Paul Logan

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