Inherent Vice currently screens in New York City and Los Angeles. It receives a nationwide expansion on January 9, 2015.
An opening title card from Jean-Luc Godard’s Goodbye to Language features the following text: “Those lacking imagination take refuge in reality”. That’s the sort of line that could’ve fit snugly within the hippie drawl of Joanna Newson’s sonorous narration in Inherent Vice, where she goes as far as foretelling the “astrologically perilous” times at hand. As Sortilège, a name referring to a form of divination, Newsom lingers as an ominous spirit of dread-filled propulsion found in spurts through Paul Thomas Anderson’s film. Her presence accounts for less than a quarter of the film but is an integral part of the film’s success; or, perhaps more correctly, is critical to the film succeeding at all. Amid the visual density on display, the impeccable craft of its production and symbiotic level of performance, this is a film that finds solace in her ethereal spirit. For all of Inherent Vice’s gags and humor, for its verbal dexterity and frozen-banana crudeness, there is something jarringly downtrodden about the picture, where the film covertly trades imagination for reality.Read More