“Inherent Vice”

Ever year that there is a Paul Thomas Anderson film released, everyone looks to the Oscars to see what he or the film will be nominated for, as this ends up being Anderson’s sixth nomination. “Inherent Vice,” however, slides in with only two nominations including one for Best Adapted Screenplay. Based on the 2009 detective novel of the same name, written by Thomas Pynchon, the film delves into the life of the unconventional private investigator Larry “Doc” Sportello (played in the film by Joaquin Phoenix), as he gets drawn into the search for his ex-girlfriend, Shasta Fay Hepworth (Katherine Waterston), and her predicament with real-estate mogul Mickey Wolfmann (Eric Roberts). Along the way, other cases intersect, including one with a man named Coy who is said to be dead, an mysterious corporation named the Golden Fang, and a Neo-Nazi group. Humor is key to the story as a whole, making the character of Doc so utterly likable, that you want to see what else he can get up to. Doc’s pseudo-friend Detective Christian F. “Bigfoot” Bjornsen (Josh Brolin) is ultimately the driving force of most of the screenplay, showing up to the move the story along or to cause Doc some sort of grief. Every scene in the film contains some sort of off-beat humor and to Anderson’s credit, I have never seen a film quite like “Inherent Vice”.

What’s its competition? Let’s put it this way, “Inherent Vice” is the only screenplay in this category that does not also have a Best Picture nomination. That being said, I would think it almost impossible for the Paul Thomas Anderson to win. With the “American Sniper” hype machine in full force, strong support behind the British darlings “The Imitation Game” and “The Theory Of Everything”, and even Sundance winner “Whiplash” having a better chance at taking Best Adapted Screenplay (even though it’s not actually adapted), Anderson should consider himself lucky for even being nominated.

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// Produced by JoAnne Sellar, Daniel Lupi, and Paul Thomas Anderson // Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson //
// Dated Viewed: Sunday, January 25th, 2015 // Pacific Sherman Oaks 5 //  34 films – 29 days //

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