Happy International Cannabis Day! April 20th (4/20) has become an unofficial countercultural holiday wherein people gather in large groups to mass-consume marijuana—at precisely 4:20 PM. One of the largest congregations will meet on San Francisco’s famous “Hippie Hill” in Golden Gate Park near the Haight-Ashbury district; the ensuing plumes of ganga smoke will likely be seen by astronauts on the International Space Station.
If you’re not fortunate enough to live in an area tolerant to public weed toking, you may choose to celebrate 4/20 in the privacy of your own home. If you’re a fan of horror movies and Mary Jane, consider sinking into the sofa with one of these stoner-friendly tales of terror. Spark a blunt, pass the doobie to the left, and take a hit from the bong—then settle in for some scary high times!
The Cabin in the Woods (2012)
The character Marty in The Cabin in the Woods (played by Fran Kranz) is a bona fide stoner superhero! Form his super-sly, retractable coffee-thermos bong to his perceptive (paranoid?) insights, this pot-head serves as the single voice of reason and an unlikely survivor who (almost) saves the day (before he dooms the entire world). Who knew that THC counteracts mind-altering chemicals that make people do stupid things? Conclusion: Smoking marijuana makes you smart!
Idle Hands (1999)
In Idle Hands, Devon Sawa plays Anton Tobias, a quintessential burner who’s right hand becomes possessed by a demonic force. Seth Green and Elden Henson play a couple of affable zombies with a killer case of the munchies. Jessica Alba plays… Who cares! It’s Jessica Alba, back when she was a fresh and nubile new-comer. Idle Hands is an absolutely hilarious R-rated romp; one of my favorite scenes involves “Gene Simmons” having sex with “Paul Stanley”.
This is the End (2013)
Seth Rogan brought his unique brand of stoner-comedy, exemplified in Pineapple Express (2008), to the laugh-riot apocalyptic film, This is the End. This side-splitting meta-movie features Rogan and a bevy of comic actors playing self-eviscerating versions of themselves; the line-up includes: James Franco, Jonah Hill, Danny McBride, Craig Robinson, and Emma Watson (in a scene-stealing cameo). Seeing Michael Cera getting his butt licked before falling into a fiery abyss is worth the price of admission alone!
The Lost Boys (1987)
Sleep all day, party all night, never grow old, and never die: Sure, it’s fun being a vampire, but when things spin out of control, you can count on weed-toking Grampa (played by Barnard Hughes) to rush in and save the day. Corey Haim (Rest in Peace) brings major comic relief as Sam, along with Corey Feldman and Jamison Newlander as Edgar and Alan: The Frog Brothers. Best gross-out stoner moment: “They’re only noodles, Michael”.
Freddy vs. Jason (2003)
The lauded slasher crossover Freddy vs. Jason has some spectacular horror comedy undertones, exemplified by the character Bill Freeburg, a blissfully oblivious stoner played by Jason Mewes doppelganger Kyle Labine. No wonder Freddy Krueger singled out Freeburg for bodily possession; he must have been feeling fine inside that blazed body!
Beyond the Black Rainbow (2010)
This Canadian sci-fi thriller is notoriously difficult to decipher. Watching Beyond the Black Rainbow high won’t necessarily illuminate anything, but it’ll surely make the experience more enjoyable. To be clear, this one won’t set you giggling like a school-girl, but it will appeal to stoners who enjoy dystopian cinematography and intensely trippy visuals. The plot: Something about a deranged doctor (who doesn’t have any eyebrows) tormenting a beautiful telekinetic mute inside a robot-infested compound.
Drag Me to Hell (2009)
While nothing about the Sam Raimi helmed Drag Me to Hell is specifically stoner-centric, it’s an excellent film to enjoy after a few choice bong rips. Loan officer Christine Brown (played by Alison Lohman) learns the hard way never to cross a curse-wielding Gypsy. I guess she never read Stephen King’s Thinner or saw the movie. A possessed, talking goat is a definite show-stealer: [Bleating] “You tricked me, you black-hearted who-o-o-o-o-ore! You b-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-itch!”
Stoner icon Jason Mewes doesn’t last long in the movie Feast, but the film is still Grade-A entertainment that definitely benefits from the effects of cannabis. Feast delivers raunchy and raucous black comedy, gory action at break-neck pacing, and way-over-the-top gross-out thrills. Prepare yourself to witness some graphic and disgusting creature-sex, because you won’t soon forget it!
John Dies at the End (2012)
Don Coscarelli, the mastermind behind Bubba Ho-Tep and the Phantasm franchise, delivers a singularly bizarre and hallucinatory experience, steeped in metaphysics and nods to drug culture. Based on the short story by David Wong, John Dies at the End features a duo of slacker protagonists trying to save the world from an inter-dimensional alien invasion. Those with THC on the brain will flip when they encounter the sinister meat-monster!
Jacob’s Ladder (1990)
Warning: Watching Jacob’s Ladder while stoned may fuck you up! But isn’t being terrified half the fun of horror movies? This 1990’s cult classic that plays out like a fever dream may induce sweaty palms, paranoia, and panic attacks; the hospital scenes are especially brutal. Being too stoned may also cause you to weep at the film’s conclusion, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Just don’t blame me if you’re left overwhelmed and questioning reality.
If you’re a Kush Connoisseur and a horror movie fan, puff-puff-pass this one along. And if you plan on celebrating 4/20 like I am, remember to keep munchies and a bottle of Visine handy. Now: Light ‘em up!
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