Pass the Popcorn
A Guide to the Choicest of Stoner Movies.
Published: April 17, 2013
The Hash Bash, the Higher Ground column, John Sinclair, multitudinous “water pipe” shop sponsors and medical marijuana clinic ads; these are all totems of this illustrious rag’s long and proud history covering the many and varied movements, trends, setbacks and advances in the struggle for wider public acceptance of the sticky icky arts. Frankly, we love all our readers, but we have a particular soft spot for those who enjoy perusing our pages in an altered state. In honor of stoners’ high holy day, 4/20, we offer up a quick sampling of some flicks we think are positively potty.
5. Super High Me (2007)
Slyly clever slacker comedian Doug Benson solidified his status as high-on icon with this send-up of crusading, personality-driven documentaries. Where filmmaker Morgan Spurlock subjected himself to danger from a strictly fatty and salty diet of nothing but McDonald’s, Benson bravely weaned himself of the magic herb for a whole month, then turned around and smoked everything within arm’s reach, all while having his health monitored. While the comedic and medical data might have been a bit muddled, we’re pretty sure Benson established that dope is surely a gateway drug to increased Big Mac consumption.
4. Half Baked (1998)
Long before abandoning his classic sketch series and a mega-million-dollar contract, the brilliant, unpredictable and now semi-reclusive Dave Chappelle starred in this riotously goofy tribute to THC-spiked antics. Featuring fellow doper faves Jim Breuer and Harlan Williams as feckless potheads trying to rescue their friend from jail while battling a nasty drug lord, this weirdly addictive, deeply silly laugher grows on the viewer with repeated viewings — and if those viewers are anything like our former roommates, you’ll watch it a lot. A whole damn lot.
3. Evil Bong (2006)
An ultra-low budget spoof quickie about a crew of lazy frat boys who fall victim to a voodoo-cursed water pipe that totally harshes everyone’s mellow by unleashing the forces of hell with every toke, and then transports the doomed user inside “the weed world.” Co-starring dope comedy legend Tommy Chong as a ’60s flashback casualty, with a plan to stop the bong’s murderous ways, this is more madness from the same twisted minds that brought the world the priceless gift of The Gingerdead Man. The poster sports the inspired tagline “If you get high, you die.”
2. I Love You Alice B. Tolklas (1968)
Now a mostly forgotten curio, this Blake Edwards-helmed send-up of the peace and love counterculture has aged poorly, but serves as the template for pretty much any subsequent dopey movie in which a buttoned-up square gets exposed to Mary Jane and unravels at his tightly wound seams. Peter Sellers starts as the nebbish in question, a stressed-out, henpecked lawyer who runs away to the freaky bosom of hippiedom when he meets a sexy flower child (Leigh Taylor-Young) who bakes absolutely killer pot brownies. Not Sellers’ funniest work, but an amusing historical peek at how the Greatest Generation really felt about their loopy, free-loving boomer offspring.
1. Heavy Metal (1981)
Not technically a “stoner” movie, but a movie that you pretty much have to be stoned to properly enjoy. An animated anthology based on the long-running illustrated fantasy magazine that was an essential staple in the bathroom of every dorm and head shop in the world for decades, this collection of oversexed, absurd and sporadically hyper-violent sci-fi fantasy cartoons is a real mindbender. This colorful, jumbled experimental odyssey was voiced by top-notch sketch comedy talent of the day, such as John Candy, Joe Flaherty, Eugene Levy and more, and it’s a movie guaranteed to bemuse and bedazzle, just as long as you’ve packed your bong tight.
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