CHEECH AND CHONG
Story by Mike Ricker @RickerDJ
“Your license, I need your license,” the police officer requests at the driver’s side window as smoke flows past. “It’s on the bumper back there,” Cheech points. Is there anything that better represents the genesis of Cannabis normalization? This proverbial slap in the face to authority set into motion a sea change toward public acceptance, while relishing in the notion that Cannabis use, and life, should not be taken too seriously. Released in 1978, this zany romp became the perfect antidote to the uptight Nixon era and post-60s war tension. And for this 12-year-old boy whose father’s daily joint toking was immediately validated, the lasting impression has not been lost 40 years later.
Sept. 1978 | Directed by Tommy Chong & Lou Adler
Available on Netflix, YouTube tv, Google Play, Amazon Prime, Vudu – $2.99
Story by makani nelson @ChoiceNug
Do you remember that one friend that came to get you high when you were feeling down? “It’s Friday, you ain’t got no job, and you ain’t got shit to do!” This iconic quote has held fast ever since being uttered by Chris Tucker’s character, Smokey. And while “Friday” has many different themes to unpack, there is no denying that it is a true stoner classic.
Ice Cube wrote a ‘90s masterpiece, capturing a certain time in one’s life. Craig has no direction, he gets fired on his day off, his friend who got him high can’t pay back his dealer, and he has to deal with the neighborhood bully.
This movie is loaded with hilarious quotes, as well as many lessons for young men in this demographic growing up at the time.
If you haven’t seen “Friday,” please do yourself a favor and watch it. Don’t forget to light one up and remember what Smokey said: “Weed is from the earth. God put this here for me and you. Take advantage man, take advantage.”
April 1995 | Directed by F. Gary Gray | Cinemax – subscription, iTunes, Google Play, Vudu, YouTube, Amazon Prime – $3.99
FEAR AND LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS.
Story by Tom Bowers @PropagateConsultants
In high school, my friends and I draped over the furniture and howled at Cheech and Chong getting blasted with Paul “Pee Wee” Reubens in “Nice Dreams.” By the time I got to college, my roommates and I shared a room with Dave Chappelle’s smiling face looking down from a “Half Baked” poster hanging over the couch. These were the stoner films of my youth.
But as a budding young writer with novel aspirations of the journalistic variety, nothing left a mark like “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.”
Now here was a film. Huge, uncomfortably hallucinogenic visuals. Frenetic, hilarious performances. A killer psych rock soundtrack. And at the center of it all, the razor-sharp screenplay filled with the incendiary, the legendary, the unapologetically poetic political commentary of journalist Hunter S. Thompson.
“Fear and Loathing” reset the bar for what the drug culture film could be because it wasn’t just a film about getting high. It refocused the conversation on the realm of political discourse, introducing a new generation of heads and aspiring writers to the searing, literary style of Thompson’s brand of Gonzo journalism.
I’ll never forget the moment when Flea walks into the bathroom, asking, “What’s the trouble?” before licking acid off of Thompson’s sleeve. Or the way the carpet crawls and slithers in those Vegas hotels. But what really left an impression were the intricate, frenzied internal monologues full of horror and beauty that sliced straight to the marrow of the skeletons in America’s closet.
Now, I’ll never be the next Hunter S. Thompson. No one will. But I know 20-year-old me wasn’t alone in dreaming that maybe – just maybe – I could be.
May 1998 | Directed by Terry Gilliam | Available on iTunes, Amazon Prime, Google Play, Vudu, YouTube – $3.99
SUPER HIGH ME
Story by Wyatt Early @ErrlyWyatt
“I saw that movie “Super Size Me” when I was high,” comedian Doug Benson jokes. “MISTAAAKE! That is messed up, you know? The premise of the movie is that it’s bad to eat a lot of McDonalds, but I’m sitting here all high thinking, ‘Well, I could go for a hot apple or a frenchy at this point. Hook me up man.’ And he’s just gorging it all on himself and then throwing up – it’s disgusting. If that’s a movie – eating McDonalds for 30 days – and people are willing to pay to see it, I’ve got an idea for a movie. I’m gonna smoke pot every day for 30 days, try to remember to film it, and my movie is going to be called “Super High Me.” Or “Business as Usual” – I haven’t decided yet.”
Producer Alex Campbell and director Michael Blieden heard of Doug’s idea and approached him, wanting to make the movie. They set out to make a mocumentary where Doug would not smoke Cannabis for 30 days, immediately followed by 30 days of heavy daily consumption.
Doug says the first 30 days of non-consumption is to show “how awful it can be” when he doesn’t consume Cannabis at all.
Since the film was made in 2007, California had not yet legalized recreational adult use, and so Doug had to become a medical Cannabis patient under Proposition 215 to legally consume Cannabis.
Doug was tested throughout both 30 day periods to see differences in things like lung capacity, memory, IQ, sperm count and even psychic abilities.
During his first set of lung capacity tests, Doug’s doctor stated that in his 17 years of heavy Cannabis use, he hasn’t done any permanent damage. However, his lung function did increase a little more than 2% after three weeks of not smoking.
After not consuming any Cannabis for 30 days, Doug kicks off his consumption with a Volcano vaporizer. He enters the dispensary not knowing what to expect or what he wants to purchase at all. It was a pleasant surprise to see educated dispensary operators and budtenders that were able to point him in the right direction.
I will leave the results of Doug’s tests a surprise for when you watch the documentary.
April 20, 2008 | Directed by Michael Blieden | Vudu – free / Amazon Prime – $0.99
Story by max early @LIFTED_STARDUST
WE ALL have that one quintessential heady movie that changed the game for us. For me, “Pineapple Express” was one of the first movies that helped me signify between different strains, further growing my curiosity for Cannabis cultivars.
After seeing this movie, I began to search for certain elusive strains such as Pineapple Express. For anyone who has had the pleasure of trying it, they know that it’s the real deal!
Seth Rogen and James Franco’s wild antics make for an unimaginable plot with lots of twists and turns. So kick back, relax, roll up a cross joint or two – just make sure it’s not the Snicklefritz!
August 2008 | Directed by David Gordon Green, Amazon Prime, Vudu – $2.99 / Google Play, YouTube – $3.99 / iTunes – $9.99
Story by Early
Set in the beautiful English countryside of Cornwall, “Saving Grace” is a timeless romantic comedy about a widowed cultivator Grace, played by Brenda Blethyn, whose husband leaves her with a ton of debt after his suicide. The movie starts with Grace’s caretaker Matthew, played by Craig Ferguson, digging the grave for her recently departed husband and the sounds of someone smoking a joint. Turns out Matthew has a sick pot plant and he brings it to Grace to rejuvenate. Grace uses her years of hydroponic experience and turns the sick little plant into a greenhouse full of prime buds. The plot thickens as they navigate the illegal market to distribute the crop. Filled with many hilarious scenes, as well as true commentary of how just about anyone could end up growing Cannabis for profit when faced with insurmountable debt, this is a classic and truly entertaining Cannabis movie.
Sept. 2000 | Directed by nigel cole | iTunes – $2.99, Amazon Prime, Vudu, Google Play, YouTube – $3.99
Story by Joshua Stahle
Grandma’s Boy holds a special place in my heart as one of my go-to movies to just kick back and relax. An incredibly hilarious comedy, the flick follows 35-year-old video game tester Alex as he is forced to move into his grandma’s house after his roommate spends all of their rent money on hookers. The trials that follow include the ups and downs of life with Grandma (seriously, buy a microwave!), as well as encounters with some outlandish characters that jump off the screen. Dante, who might just be one of the most over exaggerated stoner characters ever conceived, is of particular hilarity. Although I have never been high enough to put up my Christmas tree in the middle of the summer while only wearing my birthday suit, perhaps that is just the kind of activity I need to pick up the spirits for these trying times.
Jan. 2006 | Directed by Nicholaus Goossene | Hulu, HBO subscription, Google Play, Vudu, Amazon Prime – $3.99 / iTunes – $9.99
STORIES by LEAF NATION CONTRIBUTORS | ILLUSTRATIONS by JOSHUA BOULET @joshuaboulet for LEAF NATION