Movie fans must not fret any longer: the trailer for Paul Thomas Anderson’s hotly anticipated Thomas Pynchon adaptation, Inherent Vice, landed yesterday, and it promises an entirely unique vision from the methodical American auteur.
The first ever film adaptation of a Pynchon novel, Inherent Vice takes place in the drug-dazed 1960 and 70s crime world of Los Angeles, in which P.I. Doc Sportello finds himself on a heady journey investigating the disappearance of a former girlfriend. But no short synopsis could possibly account for all the insanity Pynchon – and certainly Anderson – have stuffed into this raucous and psychedelic romp, which includes a bustling cast of surfers, rockers, drug-addicts, loan sharks, detectives, and the mysterious “Golden Fang.”
The assortment of colorful characters seems to be well matched by the cast Anderson has assembled, which is headed, of course, by Joaquin Phoenix, who sparked so tremendously under Anderson’s direction on 2012’s The Master. Here he seems to be playing in an entirely different register, merging feral intensity with a jocular, drug-fueled bluster befitting such an apparently gonzo comedic vision. The other players are no less auspicious: Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson, Katherine Waterston, Reese Witherspoon, Benicio Del Toro, Martin Short, Jena Malone, and Joanna Newsom will make up the rest of Anderson’s juicy world.
To be sure, Anderson has dwelled in comedy before: 1997’s Boogie Nights and 2002’s Punch-Drunk Love are particularly sharp, funny films, but Inherent Vice looks to be taking the comedy quite a bit further, even into farce. Watch the trailer above and let us know what you think!
Inherent Vice premieres at the New York Film Festival on October 4. Warner Bros. will give the film a limited release on December 12.