Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice Looks Like a Comic Masterpiece

September 30, 2014 9:50 AM

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Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice Looks Like a Comic Masterpiece

Perhaps the most anticipated film of the year, Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice, finally has a trailer. An adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s novel, the film looks like something of a callback for the director—after the towering one-man dramas of There Will Be Blood and The Master, Anderson has returned to the sprawling, Altmanesque style and Southern California setting of early work like Boogie Nights and Magnolia.

It’s a welcome change. In fact, Inherent Vice looks like a straight-up comedy. In a recent New York Times piece, Anderson revealed that slapstick Zucker Brother comedies, dense with visual gags, were some of the main influences on the film. That plays out in the trailer—there’s a loose and manic fee...

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