The B-Movie Podcast

The B-Movie Podcast: Neo Noir Private Dicks – Inherent Vice

We’ve got a Neo Noir series all month long in August. This episode we’re looking at Inherent Vice.

Inherent Vice makes us remember what was so present in Anderson’s Boogie Nights; he can make a delightfully weird and funny film. At first glance, one thinks that Anderson is playing fast and loose. Upon closer inspection, the writer/director is pushing out so much information on multiple levels and it will make your head spin. Inherent Vice allows you to either watch it on a surface level or to dig deeper into the broken beating heart of the film. The simple task of finding his missing ex-girlfriend, Doc Sportello (Joaquin Phoenix), finds so much more in a very unpredictable fashion. Part of the joy and humor rises out of just how much of a tangled mess Sportello inadvertently gets himself into.  With great performances by Josh Brolin, Hong Chau and Martin Short amongst others, this is as much detective film as Robert Altman’s classic The Long Goodbye but deconstructs its genre like Altman’s McCabe and Mrs. Miller.

Release Year: 2014

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson

Writer(s): Paul Thomas Anderson, Thomas Pynchon

Cast of Note: Joaquin Phoenix, Katherine Waterston, Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon, Benicio del Toro, Jena Malone, Hong Chau, Maya Rudolph, Michael K. Williams, Martin Short, Martin Donovan, Eric Roberts, Serena Scott Thomas, Jillian Bell

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