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Inherent Vice: The Movie
December 2, 2010 9:05 AM   Subscribe

Paul Thomas Anderson (the auteur behind There Will Be Blood and Magnolia) is planning to adapt Thomas Pynchon’s 2009 novel, Inherent Vice. Robert Downey Jr. would play the lead role of Doc Sportello.
posted by naju (37 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

 
I really love PT Anderson, but I'm gonna guess based on the way he adapted Oil! that this will end up being a biopic of Charlie Manson.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:09 AM on December 2, 2010


Anderson, Downey and Pynchon all just opened their mailboxes to find packages of gold, frankincense and myrrh with no return address.

Seriously, this is a trifecta of absolutely fucking awesome. I'm trying really hard to not have too-high expectations and I can't.
posted by griphus at 9:09 AM on December 2, 2010 [8 favorites]


Lovely typo!
posted by naju at 9:10 AM on December 2, 2010


"too-high expectations"

That's what I had for the book. Oops.
posted by chavenet at 9:10 AM on December 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Nice, I loved this book. I think it would work well as a film.
posted by Dick Laurent is Dead at 9:11 AM on December 2, 2010


Already a huge fan of Anderson's work, There Will Be Blood was twenty-four frames of perfection per second. One of America's most talented young filmmakers. Whether it's this adaptation, his 'The Master' Scientology/religious cult drama, or something else entirely, I'm sure it will be very interesting.
posted by NationalKato at 9:13 AM on December 2, 2010


Neat. Although I was hoping for the other Paul Anderson.
posted by brundlefly at 9:14 AM on December 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


I didn't like There Will Be Blood very much, but I adored Magnolia and Boogie Nights. I'll watch anything this guy makes.
posted by empath at 9:15 AM on December 2, 2010


I guess Pynchon has earned the right to cash in.
posted by Joe Beese at 9:17 AM on December 2, 2010


Seeing as everything else Pynchon wrote is more like Inherently Unfilmable, this is worthy of celebration. Exciting!
posted by Schlimmbesserung at 9:19 AM on December 2, 2010


I think RDJ would be a decent choice to play Doc, but I'm not a huge fan of adaptations in general. There's too much they just have to leave out. And for me personally, most of the joy of Pynchon is all the stuff that a film couldn't possibly capture.
posted by statolith at 9:22 AM on December 2, 2010


In fact, I did wonder whether, while he was writing the book, Pynchon was aiming to write something that could actually be filmed.
posted by Grangousier at 9:22 AM on December 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


You could probably make The Crying of Lot 49 with Julia Stiles as Oedipa, Shia LaBeouf as Metzger, and an army of Tim Burton CGI-cloned Johnny Depps as everyone else.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:23 AM on December 2, 2010 [6 favorites]


Shame they couldn't get the CGI de-aged Jeff Bridges from Tron Legacy for the lead - it's fun to read the book as Big Lebowski fanfic, set before the Dude met Walter.
posted by hilker at 9:25 AM on December 2, 2010 [7 favorites]


I think RDJ would be a decent choice to play Doc, but I'm not a huge fan of adaptations in general. There's too much they just have to leave out. And for me personally, most of the joy of Pynchon is all the stuff that a film couldn't possibly capture.

Yeah, but if anyone can adapt an unfilmable book, it's Paul Thomas Anderson. I'm probably one of the few people who has actually read Oil!, and while it is a fine book, There Will Be Blood is in a different class entirely. However, I'm not looking forward to the Pynchon fans who will be pissed off at how different an Inherent Vice adaptation will be.
posted by muddgirl at 9:33 AM on December 2, 2010


Julia Stiles as Oedipa

No, the young Teri Garr.
posted by chavenet at 9:36 AM on December 2, 2010


Seeing as everything else Pynchon wrote is more like Inherently Unfilmable...

I feel like this is sort of cheating, though. I'd love to see an adaptation of, say, Against the Day. I can actually even see this working if the director is absolutely ruthless enough to just take a pair of garden shears to the physical book itself, cutting out massive swaths of text and muttering, "Garbage! Rubbish! Poppycock!" and "Well, we're not doing that!" in between manic giggles.

Anderson seems ruthless enough to do that, so it's kind of a let down that the Pynchon he's adapting is already "the Coherent One" in everyone's minds.
posted by byanyothername at 10:22 AM on December 2, 2010


I loved the book and I don't agree that it's unfilmable at all. Or at least it's possible to take a subset of the book and film it properly.
posted by tommasz at 10:31 AM on December 2, 2010


There was a German movie interpretation of Gravity's Rainbow. I haven't seen it. Inherent Vice though would make a perfect movie. It's got everything, I imagine it would come out sort of like wonderboys or something.

I wouldn't really care who directed it. I think it would be really fun to see it onscreen.

Against the Day would be a great premium-channel miniseries.
posted by nutate at 10:35 AM on December 2, 2010


while he may not be the most consistent director out there, i think the only real choice for Pynch would be Terry Gilliam (fear and loathing anyone?). Yes, i know this choice would doom the film to never be completed, but still...
and Nic Cage please, RD jr is hot right now, but NC brings the right kind of crazee.
posted by OHenryPacey at 10:38 AM on December 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Man, Terry Gilliam needs to forget that CGI exists. Like, completely. It's ruined his vision, or at least my enjoyment of it.
posted by griphus at 10:44 AM on December 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Against the Day would be a great premium-channel miniseries.

A great 97-episode miniseries, you mean.
posted by The Mouthchew at 10:58 AM on December 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


More of a maxiseries. Maybe get Pixar involved?
posted by mike_bling at 11:22 AM on December 2, 2010


A slight derail, but Kakutani's (or the NYT copy editorial staff's) decision to spell out the Krazy Kat character's name as "Officer Pupp" is sacrilege.
posted by blucevalo at 11:24 AM on December 2, 2010


100 episode maxiseries. 8 seasons, no CGI... all motion control effects (done by Pixar) and intricately built actually airborne dirigibles pushing the boundaries of technologies past and present...
posted by nutate at 12:10 PM on December 2, 2010


I always thought the movie Pi was rather Pynchonesque.
posted by Bigfoot Mandala at 12:15 PM on December 2, 2010


Soup Of The Night
posted by lslelel at 12:22 PM on December 2, 2010


Yeah, but if anyone can adapt an unfilmable book, it's Paul Thomas Anderson.

My vote would go to Charlie Kaufman.

A great 97-episode miniseries, you mean.

It worked for Berlin Alexanderplatz!
posted by mykescipark at 12:40 PM on December 2, 2010


Ok, But Robert Downey Jr has to play a different character than that fast talking one he's played in all his movies from the past 6 years.
posted by Liquidwolf at 1:15 PM on December 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Pure joy.

In fact, I did wonder whether, while he was writing the book, Pynchon was aiming to write something that could actually be filmed.

Ditto. There was a trailer too. ($27.95?!) I was pretty sure the book was his attempt to make a mainstream book-to-film.

I loved the book. (Zomes!) The only problem was it was too short. I read it twice back to back.

It sounds like RJD is just their first pick. Personally, I'd much rather have Seymour J. Hoffman as Doc. I think he'd be absolutely perfect.

And although Denis is described as "like Cheech," I totally pictured Andy Dick when I was reading it.

"Do you eat pussy, by the way?"
posted by mrgrimm at 1:46 PM on December 2, 2010


"too-high expectations"

I, too, wanted Inherent Vice to have more weed in it.
posted by box at 3:42 PM on December 2, 2010


I looooooooooooved this book so much. My favorite Pynchon after The Crying of Lot 49.

And by far his most filmable book ever. There's a great zany private-eye story in there that will translate beautifully to the screen.
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:43 PM on December 2, 2010


I tried going joint for joint reading that book. It took me a long time to finish it.
posted by nutate at 3:52 PM on December 2, 2010


I tried going joint for joint reading that book. It took me a long time to finish it.

Please don't read Less Than Zero.
posted by griphus at 4:00 PM on December 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


Against the Day would be a great premium-channel...100 episode maxiseries. 8 seasons, no CGI... all motion control effects (done by Pixar) and intricately built actually airborne dirigibles pushing the boundaries of technologies past and present...Terry Gilliam needs to forget that CGI exists...Charlie Kaufman...

Absolutely the film of my dreams.
posted by byanyothername at 4:13 PM on December 2, 2010


griphus, yeah I should've quit the whole ______ for _______ thing after american psycho.

zzzzzzzzzzing.
posted by nutate at 4:45 PM on December 2, 2010


genius all around. this will be fantastic if it actually happens.
posted by muckster at 5:39 PM on December 2, 2010


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