Inherent Vice

Inherent Vice ★★★★½

In America, money is everything. In film noir, money is everything else.

Towards the end of Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice, there’s a scene in which Joaquin Phoenix’s Larry “Doc” Sportello – the goofily mutton-chopped private detective at the heart of this sweet and strung-out noir odyssey – is offered a generous mountain of cash in exchange for the return of it really doesn’t matter what. When Doc tells his client that he might prefer a different form of payment, the man curtly replies: “Well, money would be a lot easier.” It always is.

But there’s nothing easy about this.


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