Let me ask you something. You ever seen Speed Racer? You ever seen Speed Racer…..on weed? To be perfectly blunt, pun intended, there are movies that can only be enjoyable when under the influences. But just like with medicine and beer, there are some movies that don’t work well with the wacky tobaccy. Here are the best and the worst movies to keep in mind when the next time you’re browsing Netflix.
BEST MOVIES TO WATCH WHILE HIGH
Bright lights, streaky blurs and enough CGI to choke out George Lucas, Speed Racer is pure stoner movie fare. The Wachowski brothers have always been very visual as evidenced by The Matrix trilogy, but here they’ve pulled out all the stops. Cars do karate, jumping through the air with hydrolics like they were jets. Cities look like elaborate Skittle factories with lots of colors and lights. And the climatic final moments of the big race turn into a psychedelic kaleidoscope of motion blur, lights and checkerboards. The film itself was a box-office disaster because Warner Brothers tried to market it as a family film. Why didn’t they put ads on the packaging of stoner food like Twinkies and Ho-Hos? They could’ve at least struck a deal with Red Bull to get the ADD crowd into the theater.
“Dude, have you ever wondered what it would be like to live in a computer?” I have actually heard these words uttered from a stoner’s mouth. I pointed him in the direction of Tron, a 1980’s adventure film that answers his very question. Is it the truth? Of course not, but CGI bikes and spaceships are a lot more entertaining than just electricity flowing through circuits. In other words, it gives the stoners exactly what they wanted. And with the release of Tron: Legacy, a new generation of pot-heads can share in the inflated imagination of how a computer works. They’ll never look at Pentium processor the same way again and probably have a newfound fear for digital scanners.
This is a no-brainer. Stoner movies about stoners generally draw in the expected audience, but Half-Baked is the king of kings in that respect. Dave Chappelle both satirizes and exposes the world of weed as his friends deal drugs to get their buddy out of prison. There are several moments in the movie where Dave describes different kinds of stoners and how they act. Chances are a pot-head is going to see himself or a friend in one of these descriptions. So whether you are a trippy hippy or a struggling artist, chances are you’ll be able to relate to Half-Baked. Not to mention there are multiple quotes that pot-heads have etched into the stoner bible.
When I was in high school, the funniest thing in the world to me was Arnold Schwarzenegger. Every quote, every line, everything about this man was hilarious and several of my stoner friends agreed. We could go for days just quoting every single line from every movie he has been in, but Kindergarten Cop was the most frequent. I have seen first-hand the mannerisms of Detective John Kimble send a toker into a laughing fit. If you’re baked and end up popping this movie in your DVD player, keep your finger on the pause button to take breaks in between that line. While sober, people see this as a decent comedy. But with a group of friends baked off their asses, it takes three hours to get through Kindergarten Cop because of the constant pausing for laughter and quoting.
The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou
There are several scenes in Wes Anderson’s sea adventure/comedy that simply feel awkward and dead. They are funny moments, just more slight-smile funny than ha-ha funny. But to a stoner who can find humor in the most inappropriate of time, The Life Aquatic has to be a riot. Not to mention the trippy score, incredible scenery and beautiful underwater scenes are enough to keep even the most jaded of Mary Jane consumers content. Also, just look at Bill Murray. Just try to look at this guy’s face while high and not crack a smile. The man is pure comedy gold and when he is as dead-pan as he is in Life Aquatic, it’s like a strip-tease of humor.
Roger Corman’s crazy tale of Peter Fonda freaking out on acid may be the most accurate movie representation of a drug trip. By this, of course, I mean the movie makes no damn sense at all. Fonda is bombarded by visions of horses, cult figures and a creepy Dennis Hopper. Though he takes this mind trip under supervision, it’s not long before he escapes on his own and starts doing crazy things in public. This includes pulling other people’s laundry out of dryers, jumping into a pool naked, freaking out a club and just going nuts at the sight of city lights. This just has to be a movie that is better to watch stoned because it is completely incomprehensible sober. Not to mention if you buy the DVD there is a feature which just plays a continous loop of psychedelic lights and music that you can just ‘trip out’ to.
I’ve gotta believe that Ridley Scott was under some sort of influence while making this adaptation of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. It’s a bizarre work of science fiction with clones, flying cars, owls, midget robots, strippers with snakes and a unicorn. The music by Vangelis is moody and bizarre, giving the film a tantric appeal. Not to mention there are moments where the movie just slows down to look at pretty lights and architecture. I also imagine you’d have to be a little bit stoned to understand any or Rutger Hauer’s dialogue as a crazed replicant. And with a grand total of FIVE different cuts of this movie, you can watch the film several times with new material. I wouldn’t recommend the theatrical cut with Harrison Ford’s narration. You might think he is actually inside your head.
For those who got baked in the 70’s and started rambling about how an album cover should be turned into a movie, Heavy Metal answered their prayers. This anthology cartoon has everything: boobs, spaceships, zombies, robots, aliens, swords, lasers, sex, gore and much more. All this set against music from Cheap Trick, Black Sabbath and Devo make for a bonafide stoner flick. Years before the film was ever released on VHS, it was circulated through art-house theaters where it has been confirmed from several sources, including the staff who worked on it, that the audience was mostly stoned and passed around joints. When sober, the movie is still okay for it’s bold adult stories and experimental animation. But I get the feeling stoners are going to get way more out of Heavy Metal than anyone else.
WORST MOVIES TO WATCH WHILE HIGH
David Lynch is generally not a good choice under any influence. I can only imagine the freakouts that could be caused by Eraserhead. Dune, however, is the worst because it leads you into the trap of believing it to be a trippy science fiction movie. With a far-off planet, alien worms and a soundtrack by Toto, it’s easy to be swayed into watching. However, the movie is darkly depressing and disturbing in its imagery. Scenes of disgusting obesity, gory violence, premature birth, aliens that resemble aborted fetuses and unnaturally deep voices. Depending on who you are, this movie will most likely send you into a stoner nightmare. And with an extended cut running nearly three hours long, it’ll feel like an eternity.
The Black Hole
If you do decide to watch Tron and get baked, try to avoid The Black Hole, another sci-fi movie from Disney. At first, the crazy opening grid sequence seems very trippy. But as the movie’s plot progresses, it goes dark. VERY dark. Darker than any other Disney film I know. A crazed man studying a black hole, murderous robots, a horrible mutant factory and lots of death. In probably one of the most uncomfortable moments in any Disney movie, a dying man is confronted with God and hell. You may groove on this movie for the first half-hour, but stop the movie right there unless you want to have your mortality shaken. As a sci-fi movie, it’s pretty cool, but only when you’re sober.
You never want to watch a movie while baked that’ll make you feel paranoid. Vertigo is just such a film. Luring you in with that crazy camera trick to make things appear farther away, Vertigo descends into a tale of cover-ups and mistaken identities. Granted there is a very trippy sequence in which Jimmy Stewart has a very colorful nightmare, but it’s still a nightmare about death and obsessing over women. Vertigo’s plot is so far fetched and overly elaborate to actually be believable in reality, but if you’re stoned, everything seems plausible. You’ll become paranoid of women in art galleries, your best buddy’s girlfriend and even bell towers. Heed my words, stoners! The colorful imagery in this movie isn’t worth the mindf*ck it’ll put you through. LOOK OUT!
Ralph Bakshi made some pretty wild cartoons in the 1970s. Heavy Traffic is about Mike, a young adult living in New York trying to make it as an artist. Of course, he has to deal with his gangster father, clingy Jewish mother, a vet with no legs who gets around on a cart and a slew of other crazy characters. Nothing goes right for Mike in this movie. He is kicked out of his parent’s house for sleeping with a black girl, turned down for selling his drawings and ultimately stoops to whoring out his best girl for money. Worst of all, the movie ends with him getting his brains blown out in one of the trippiest, non-sensical endings of all-time. Again, trippy visuals with psychedelic colors, but morally frightening and capable of causing freakouts. If anything can be taken away from the ending, it’s that no matter how hard you try you’ll just end up dead, but it’s okay because you’ll realize life was just a pinball game.
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