Part noir, part psychedelic romp, all Thomas Pynchon - private eye Doc Sportello comes, occasionally, out of a marijuana haze to watch the end of an era as free love slips away and paranoia creeps in with the L.A. fog. It's been awhile since Doc Sportello has seen his ex-girlfriend. Suddenly out of nowhere she shows up with a story about a plot to kidnap a billionaire land developer whom she just happens to be in love with. Easy for her to say. It's the tail end of the psychedelic sixties in L.A., and Doc knows that 'love' is another of those words going around at the moment, like 'trip' or 'groovy', except that this one usually leads to trouble. Despite which he soon finds himself drawn into a bizarre tangle of motives and passions whose cast of characters includes surfers, hustlers, dopers and rockers, a murderous loan shark, a tenor sax player working undercover, an ex-con with a swastika tattoo and a fondness for Ethel Merman, and a mysterious entity known as the Golden Fang, which may only be a tax dodge set up by some dentists. In this lively yarn, Thomas Pynchon, working in an unaccustomed genre, provides a classic illustration of the principle that if you can remember the sixties, you weren't there ...or ...if you were there, then you ...or, wait, is it...
This is the official film tie-in edition of Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon, an upcoming American dark comedy crime drama written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. The film stars Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson,Katherine Waterston, Reese Witherspoon, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom and Benicio del Toro. It will be the first feature film adapted from a work by Pynchon.
"Pynchon's unique blend of wackiness and wistfulness permeates every page. He uses words as carefully as Nabokov. Inherent Vice works brilliantly as both a neon-lit neo-noir and as a psychedelic lament to the Sixties" Sunday Telegraph "The intellectual game-play is characteristically dazzling...colourful and pleasurable" FT "A blast of psychedelic paisley noir; both brilliant and brain boggling by turns" Daily Mail "Pynchon leaves the rest of the American literary establishment at the starting gate...the range over which he moves is extraordinary, not simply in terms of ideas explored but also in the range of emotions he takes you through" Time Out "The most important and mysterious writer of his generation" Time
Thomas Pynchon is the author of V., The Crying of Lot 49, Gravity's Rainbow, Slow Learner, a collection of short stories, Vineland, Mason and Dixon and, most recently, Against the Day. He received the National Book Award for Gravity's Rainbow in 1974.