Inherent Vice (2014)

Lots of muttered exposition;

lots of confused characters, confusing;

lots and lots of two-shots;

fear of Manson clashing with fear of the Man;

ill-starred constellations of Jews, Nazis, Black Panthers and Chinese masseuses;

anti-dopers double-dealing in harder stuff;

Pynchon paranoia and flights of fancy;

an endless confrontation between corporate, fascist, establishment evil and free-wheeling, free-loving stoner good;

and neo-noir coils of bong-smoke narrative getting lost in the sun and seaside fog of a finite yet eternal Long Beach, 1970.

There is definitely the odd dry chuckle to be had, but this is mostly aimless, overlong torpitude, coasting on the Anderson name and the mystique that comes attached to that. More than one viewing is required for anything like comprehension, but will not bring much reward. The title doesn’t lie.

Anton Bitel