Turn Joaquin Phoenix into a washed-out detective. Then have his ex recruit him to investigate a fracticous love square—one that involves the kidnapping of her billionaire boyfriend by the billionaire’s wife and her boyfriend (say that five times fast!)—and ask musician Joanna Newsom to narrate the tale. Then you have the bare surface of Paul Thomas Anderson’s new film Inherent Vice, adapted from Thomas Pynchon’s namesake novel.
There’s always the undeniable risk that a film will fall short of its written counterpart. But judging from the newly-released trailer, stacked cast (including Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Benicio del Toro and Jena Malone), and stellar early ’70s wardrobe, the film seems to encapure the same zaniness and laugh-out-loud moments as the novel.
Inherent Vice opens in theaters this December.