Best Stoner Movies
What makes a great stoner movie? Some stoner movies feature a comedy team like Cheech and Chong. They made a career out of marijuana jokes. Some stoner movies have a general stoned aura about them like Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Some feature characters who do nothing but smoke grass for the entire movie and suffer the hilarious consequences of their actions.
Whatever the secret ingredient, all stoner movies are best when the audience is stoned. Stoner movies have elbowed their way into the American consciousness. Many of them are among the most beloved films ever because they feature that certain something: marijuana. Here’s a list of our very favorite stoner movies of all time in no particular order. That would take too much planning.
• Woodstock may not be about marijuana, but more marijuana was smoked at the drive-in theaters during Woodstock's run than was puffed during any other film. This documentary of the greatest mega-concert event of all time had everything stoners love. There was nudity, plenty of scenes of concert-goers smoking pot, songs about pot and celebrities talking about pot. The late, great Jerry Garcia casually rolled a joint of “Marijuana: Exhibit A” while the camera rolls. Country Joe and the Fish did their famous Fish Cheer for marijuana. Even Arlo Guthrie gleefully proclaimed the 400,000 people in attendance were a “lotta’ freaks.”
• Super High Me is another documentary. It was inspired by Morgan Sperlock’s film Super-Size Me. Doug Benson, the hero of this film, abstained from smoking pot for a month. Then he smoked continuously for 30 days. He interviewed politicians, medical marijuana users and other potheads. The most interesting bits were the scientific results of his binge-smoking. Benson passed his physical and showed that marijuana unleashed his own ESP powers. He even documented the “munchies” by gaining 10 pounds during his month-long bender. In retrospect, Super High Me proved that smoking pot is healthier than eating at Mickey D’s.
• It could be argued that Cheech and Chong’s first hit film is the best stoner movie ever made, but pot smokers are too mellow to argue about anything. Up in Smoke was released in 1978 and still rules the roost. The comedy duo didn’t realize it then, but Cheech and Chong started the stoner movie genre. Although the film was short on plot, it was packed full of giant joint jokes and other pot-inspired lunacy. Watch for Stacy Keach, television’s hard-boiled private eye Mike Hammer. He played a narc with a taste for marijuana who secretly smoked dope in his office.
• Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle is an entire film based on the munchies. Director Danny Leiner also directed another stoner classic mentioned somewhere in this article named Dude, Where’s My Car? It seemed that Harold and Kumar were never going to get the Holy Grail of stoner cravings. Then Neil Patrick Harris appeared. This unpredictable romp will have you laughing for the entire show. Then you’ll saddle up and seek out the nearest White Castle yourself. By the way, what would Neil Patrick Harris do?
• Dude, Where's My Car? was a starring vehicle for Ashton Kutcher. He and Sean William Scott portrayed a pair of slacker stoners who woke up after a night of partying to discover that they lost Kutcher’s car, and their house was filled with pudding. As they retraced the previous night’s footsteps, they got involved in all sorts of crazy hijinks. To make matters worse, the missing car contained their girlfriends’ anniversary presents.
• Dave Chapelle co-wrote and starred in Half-Baked. The story revolved around Chapelle’s character Thurgood. He stole weed from his job and sold it to bail his friend out of jail. The film is filled with well-known stoners like Snoop Dogg, Tommy Chong, Bob Sagett, Jon Stewart and Willie Nelson. Even Clarence Williams III, who was on the 1960s cop show The Mod Squad, had a starring role as Sampson Simpson. Perhaps the best line in the film came from a coke addict who asked, “Have you ever sucked some dick for marijuana?”
• How High starred Method Man as Silas P. Silas and Redman as Jamal King. The duo could conjure up the ghost of their dead friend Ivory while smoking pot. Somehow Silas and Jamal were accepted to Harvard where they have to fight the powers that be. Bob Dylan’s son directed this comedy that comes off as a sort of stoned version of Revenge of the Nerds. Watch for actors Fred Willard, Spalding Gray and Jeffrey Jones. Rumor has it that a sequel is coming soon.
• Fast Times at Ridgemont High boasted an all-star cast of unknowns like Sean Penn, Phoebe Cates and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Each of the young actors would go on to movie stardom. Alongside these teenaged stoners were goofballs Judge Reinhold and Ray Walston. They were best known for Police Academy and My Favorite Martian, respectively. Penn’s character, Jeff Spiccoli, needed nothing more than “tasty waves and a cool buzz” to achieve Nirvana. Spiccoli’s verbal exchanges with history professor Mr. Hand were timeless, especially when Spiccoli asked him, “Hey, bud. What’s your problem?” If there’s a cooler stoner surfer to be found, he’s not on this list of all-star pot movies.
• No list of stoner movies would be complete without mentioning a Kevin Smith film. Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back featured a movie based on a comic called Bluntman and Chronic. It furthered the legend of stoners Jay and Silent Bob. Shannon Elizabeth provided the requisite sexiness to keep the boys focused on their goal to get paid for the film based on their comic. If they didn't get their cash, they intended to sabotage the production. Jay and Silent Bob ventured far from the convenience store they haunted back in their Clerks days. This time, they even got the girls.
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