Joaquin Phoenix won his first Oscar for “Joker”. But even if his performance there was really good, according to CELEBTAP editor Pascal, he could shine even more in “Inherent Vice”. You can see the film on TV tonight.
Joaquin Phoenix (soon to be seen in Beau Is Afraid) is one of the greatest actors of our time. That’s mainly because Phoenix throws himself into his roles with self-sacrifice and likes to go where it hurts in his performances. His performances in “Gladiator”, “Her”, “The Master”, “Walk The Line”, “Come On, Come On” or “A Beautiful Day” will be long remembered for their sheer intensity. This, of course, also applies to Phoenix’s performance in “Joker”, for which he bagged his first Academy Award – fully deserved, of course.
But if it’s up to me, Joaquin Phoenix cut the more grandiose performance in Inherent Vice. Unlike “Joker”, he doesn’t have to go so extreme here, but his Larry Sportello is always close to the madness – or in danger of getting carried away by the madness of his surroundings. If you haven’t seen Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Inherent Vice” yet, catch up today, February 18, 2023: At 10:20 p.m., the 2014 film celebrates its (belated) free TV premiere on Tele 5 today!
With a full runtime of over 150 minutes, the late air date may be a problem for some. If you also prefer to watch “Inherent Vice” without commercial breaks and/or in the original English language, you can, for example, switch to online stores such as Amazon for the Blu-ray or DVD:
» “Inherent Vice” on Blu-ray and DVD at Amazon*
That’s what “Inherent Vice” is about
Los Angeles in the 1970s: Private detective and drug lover Larry “Doc” Sportello (Joaquin Phoenix) is more than surprised when one day his ex-girlfriend Shasta (Katherine Waterston) suddenly appears on the mat with him. She tells him she is having an affair with millionaire Mickey Wolfman (Eric Roberts). His wife Sloane (Serena Scott Thomas) and her lover plan to kidnap the wealthy builder and send him to a mental institution.
Doc should now help the lovestruck Shasta to prevent this project. But once the detective has started his investigation, Mickey disappears from the face of the earth. As Doc intensifies his efforts to solve the case, he must deal with his rival ex-cop Christian “Bigfoot” Bjornsen (Josh Brolin) and many other shady characters. An unscathed escape becomes increasingly unlikely for Doc.
Joaquin Phoenix is great – but so is the movie!
It’s quite surprising that “Inherent Vice” is now treated more like an insider tip. Not only because the movie was directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, who is one of the most important contemporary directors since “Boogie Nights”. The star-studded cast alone should really get a lot of attention, because in addition to the already mentioned Joaquin Phoenix, Katherine Waterston (“Babylon”), Eric Roberts (“Runaway Train”), Serena Scott Thomas (“Hostage”) and Josh Brolin (“Deadpool 2”) also features Owen Wilson (“Loki”), Reese Witherspoon (“Your Place Or Mine”), Benicio Del Toro (“Sicario”), Maya Rudolph (“Sisters”), Michael K. Williams ( “The Wire”) and Martin Short (“Only Murders In The Building”) are present. A great all-star cast that is also very playful across the board.
But above all is Joaquin Phoenix, who again puts so much effort into this that it is a joy. The official CELEBTAP review, in which “Inherent Vice” received an excellent 4.5 out of 5 stars, states: Joaquin Phoenix also plays the eternally stoned Doc with his infamous manic obsession and really thrives in the role. The special thing about his performance here is that – unlike the already mentioned “Joker” – he also shows a wonderfully natural comic comedy, which in this naturalness was perhaps even more challenging than portraying a mentally ill soul.
The CELEBTAP review of “Inherent Vice”
But “Inherent Vice” is also an exceptional work in other respects. The adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s novel of the same name resulted in a very special, utterly wacky, and often deliberately annoying visual experience: “The satirical-humorous drug thriller is a pathologically idiosyncratic, confident and stylishly staged, confusingly charming tripunlikely to find a large audience, but will delight discerning film buffs with a penchant for the truly extraordinary.”
»The novel “Inherent Vice” on Amazon*
And that’s all there is to say about “Inherent Vice”. Fans of cult films such as “Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas” or “Jackie Brown” and “The Big Lebowski” will certainly get their money’s worth here. Because through the poetic-psychedelic atmosphere that invites not only the characters, but also the audience to float and slide, one becomes witness to a masterful madness that probably only a director who had previously made art house monsters almost overwhelming in their intellect like “There Will Be Blood” or “The Master” could pull off. A special kind of liberation.
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