“This doesn’t mean we’re back to­gether”

Crime Scene - - POST MORTEM -

One of the best cult crime movies in re­cent years is also among the most baf­fling. Based on a psy­che­delic de­tec­tive novel by US au­thor Thomas Pyn­chon, In­her­ent Vice even had its own di­rec­tor sug­gest­ing that crit­ics may well dub the film “In­co­her­ent Vice”. But that’s prob­a­bly to be ex­pected when the hero of the tale is stoned out of his mind for most of the time.

Larry ‘Doc’ Sportello (Joaquin Phoenix) is not your typ­i­cal de­tec­tive. It’s 1970 and the mut­ton-chopped pri­vate eye is work­ing the mean streets of Gordita Beach, Los An­ge­les, where he is de­spised as “hippy scum” by the lo­cal po­lice, in­clud­ing the bel­liger­ent Big­foot (Josh Brolin). With his san­dals, un­kempt ap­pear­ance and in­ces­sant dope smok­ing, Doc’s hardly Philip Mar­lowe. But then again, Ray­mond Chan­dler’s plots could also be me­an­der­ing – In­her­ent Vice cer­tainly has shades of adap­ta­tions of the clas­sic hard­boiled nov­els The Big Sleep and The Long Good­bye.

Writer/di­rec­tor Paul Thomas An­der­son’s stoner noir has its mad­cap com­edy mo­ments, though there’s an un­der­cur­rent of men­ace, as the ide­al­ism of the ’60s is about to be swept away. “Para­noia alert” scrib­bles Doc in his notebook, as he begins to make

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