I love comic book movies and dumb action movies and ridiculous comedies more than almost anything out there. However, when it comes to the end of the day, my favorite movie director remains Paul Thomas Anderson, one of the most brilliant film directors on the planet. What is exciting right now is that he is working on something completely different with the adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s detective novel Inherent Vice.
Anderson’s last two movies, There Will be Blood and The Master, pushed him further away from the mainstream and into the indie art house styled films. While many people didn’t gravitate to them, they remain complex stories told in wildly creative manners. For example, There Will be Blood almost defies conventions, but at its heart, it is a horror movie in the vein of Dracula, with the oil a perfect metaphor as the life force of blood.
However, with this latest movie, Anderson is attacking another style of filmmaking that he seems to love because this movie seems more in line with earlier efforts like Boogie Nights and Punch Drunk Love.
The fact that Anderson sold Thomas Pynchon on allowing him to direct it speaks wonders. Basically, the book seems like it will adapt into a detective story where the detective is basically a stoner, much like The Dude from The Big Lebowski. What is brilliant is that Anderson sold his vision to Pynchon by saying he wanted to make a feature length movie similar to the classic TV show The Rockford Files and have his lead character just get his ass beat the entire movie.
I already want to see it.
The story takes place in 1969 Los Angeles and centers on a private detective who is helping a former lover with an intriguing case that involves infidelity, mental institutions, and policemen called “Bigfoot.”
Originally, Robert Downey Jr. was supposed to play the lead, which I wanted more than almost anything. It would have been perfect casting. However, Downey had to back out and Anderson went to his star from The Master, Joaquin Phoenix. I’m not as excited about that casting, but he can definitely pull off the disenfranchised wacko.
Also returning to the movie is his cinematographer from every one of his movies until The Master, Robert Elswit. While The Master was visually striking, I am looking forward to Elswit coming back home.
Does PT Anderson’s Inherent Vice sound like something you want to see? Let us know your thoughts below.