Movie marathon: 20 films to enjoy a great double bill with cannabis

By: Contributor Culture

Deciding what film to watch when you’ve consumed marijuana can turn into an arduous process. Especially if the smoking happens before selecting the movie, as you could find yourself at a seemingly insurmountable impasse. So, we’ve decided to help you by creating a list that includes some of the best films to enjoy while you’re high, either with friends or on your own. When you have the whole evening ahead of you, there’s nothing as well matched as cinema and cannabis.

Before we start, here are some basic rules. Firstly, a good movie to watch when you’re stoned doesn’t necessarily have to be ‘a film about stoners’. While some iconic cannabis films certainly have their place on this list, they aren’t by any means the only option for a leisurely movie session.

Secondly, this list isn’t ranked. These are only 20 films that go well with a smoking sesh. So don’t worry if you spot your favourite movie ‘below’ or ‘above’ one that you absolutely hate.

And, lastly, what do all these films have in common? Some are extremely hard to understand; others seem completely stupid; and some others are so bad that they make you question the directors’ sanity… Well, the answer is simple: they’re all incredibly stimulating when you’re under the effects of weed. And seeing that you’ve got a ticket for a double bill, you can either watch them in the order that we suggest or swap the titles around as you like. So let’s get started!


Kung Fu Hustle (2004) / Kill Bill (2003)

If you’ve never got stoned and watched a kung fu movie, you should stop reading this right now and just go for it. Kung Fu Hustle by Stephen Chow adapts very well to this motto. Despite being a real action movie, it constantly integrates many absurd aspects, always keeping you on your toes. The fights are amazing; the jokes are funny; and the images are interesting. What more could you want? Having said that, a more varied proposal should definitely include Kill Bill. Every Quentin Tarantino film would be a great addition to this list, but the vivid tones and artistic fighting scenes elevate Kill Bill to an exclusive league of stoner movies, transforming Uma Thurman into your favourite girlfriend when you’re lit.


The Big Lebowski (1988) / Pineapple Express (2008)

Without a shadow of a doubt, The Big Lebowski is THE stoner film on this list and could also be considered the best ‘traditional’ cannabis film of all time. Everybody rejoices in the exploits of Jeff ‘the Dude’ Lebowski, a lazy philosopher dressed in a bathrobe and flip-flops who seems to be floating throughout the film. Unperturbed by criminals, nihilists, and disgusting tycoons who stumble upon his life, he is suddenly wrapped in a complex mystery that will have you continuously scratching your head. On the other hand, Pineapple Express, starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, is possibly the funniest stoner film that you’ll ever watch, and the only marijuana action movie ever made. It’s definitely worth giving it a try on any ganja-related occasion.


Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998) / Fantastic Fungi (2019)

Based on a novel by Hunter S. Thompson (legendary figure of the New Gonzo Journalism), this film follows Johnny Depp as Raoul Duke in a series of hallucinogenic adventures that are the bee’s knees. It features an excellent cast, a fun story, and amazing visual effects. What else could you need? Well, for instance, learning how entheogens have shaped our perception of things at fundamental levels, something that Fantastic Fungi certainly does for you. This documentary delves into the world of the captivating but mysterious fungi that feed on organic matter and break down plant life. The central figure of the film is Paul Stamets, a mycologist who, when he was young, decided to take ten times the normal dose of psychedelic mushrooms and found himself high on a tree in the middle of a storm. When he came down from the tree, he lost his stutter and could suddenly start looking people in the eye.


Samsara (2012) / Baraka (1992)

If you’re simply looking to take a trip, this documentary without words or a narrative could be the solution. This is a kaleidoscopic collage of humanity, filmed in pristine 70 mm and spanning 25 countries, from strip clubs in Bangkok to apartment complexes adjacent to the pyramids of Egypt. It emits a slight New Age aroma, but it is also indisputably beautiful, and full of images that will make you feel as if you have crossed the doors of perception. If you combine it with Baraka (the original work from the same team), you’ll obtain a mystical visual poem of global proportions. Devoid of words and with a fragmented timeline, it is a film with a wide range of content, from holiness to materialism, on an intimate scale which is incredibly close to the emotions of the spectators.


2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) / Interstellar (2014)

For sure a friend of yours has sworn to you that seeing Stanley Kubrick’s seminal work in a state of altered consciousness is like a religious experience. But beware: you don’t know what you’re playing with. Many people feel that the first two thirds of the film are quite slow, but all of this turns upside down with the most seismic change in film history, a change that would make the most sober person feel like they are under the effects of LSD. Bright lights, lucid images, and a giant space baby can make a stoned spectator freeze. That’s why Interstellar is a much simpler way to introduce a little conversation about luminous cosmology to the room. Matthew McConaughey throws himself into a wormhole to find another habitable planet when the Earth begins to look like the Planet of the Apes. There are black holes, time dilation, multiple dimensions… but none of the overwhelming sense that life has no meaning as portrayed in 2001.


Howl’s Moving Castle (2004) / Spirited Away (2001)

A film about the power of compassion and how war is just for idiots is always a good bet in cannabis situations. In the extravagantly beautiful story by Studio Ghibli, young hatter Sophie stumbles upon a witch who quickly turns her into a 90-year-old haggard woman. She climbs aboard the flying castle of the handsome wizard Howl and sets out to try to free a fire demon that has promised to return her to her youthful self. As with all of Ghibli’s films, everything makes much more sense when you watch it. This is undoubtedly Miyazaki at his most baroque in terms of both the visual and narrative. Possibly more than his iconic The Journey of Chihiro, an Alice in Wonderland teeming with Japanese legends and myths that proves beyond a doubt why Miyazaki’s work will live forever in the imagination of his lucky viewers.


Airplane! (1980) / Top Secret (1984)

As the big evening progresses, the idea of shouting the jokes of a movie a second and a half before they arrive suddenly stops being irritating and becomes the most entertaining part. And there’s no better film than Airplane! for that purpose. For sure you’ve thought of seven or eight jokes you want to say right now since you started reading this paragraph. “Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue”… “Have you ever been in a Turkish prison?” Top Secret, on the other hand, is possibly the largest treasure from the ZAZ factory gold mine. Is it a better film than Airplane!? This is really a moot point. But if the idea behind Top Secret was to show as many funny jokes on the screen as possible, it’s hard to think of too many movies that can actually surpass it.


Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022) / The Matrix (1999)

Travelling the multiverse when you’re high is a great experience. And enjoying this unexpected winner of the 2022 Oscar for Best Film may initially seem strange and peculiar; but if you do it with a little weed in your head, you may find new perspectives that make it even more magical. There are multiple points where everything could have gone south, with the whole movie being ruined had it been done differently; but luckily that didn’t happen. The same thing goes for The Matrix, an innovative movie that’s already awesome when you’re sober; but turn a dab on, hit the play button, and you’ll see it on a completely different level. With guaranteed special effects to wow you even more than 20 years ago, a highly polished cinematography, and completely mind-blowing religious and philosophical bombs, you’ll want to take the red pill or at least an indica hybrid to see how deep the rabbit hole goes.


The Fifth Element (1997) / Total Recall (1990)

Did you know that smoking before a movie can make it more fun, more enlightening, or, you know, just tolerable? That’s exactly what happens with The Fifth Element. Even the list of characters looks like a sci-fi conjecture about stoners… Egyptian robot Steampunk!… Shape-shifting alien dogs led by an evil asymmetrical-haired Gary Oldman!… A woman with a blue tube head who sings like an autotune whale!… And the inevitable culmination of a stoner’s wet dream: Milla Jovovich playing the saviour of humanity whilst only wearing elastic bands as clothing. On the other hand, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s best action hits always were sci-fi crossovers, but Total Recall is much more astounding than Terminator or Predator. Is Schwarzenegger really a secret agent leading a rebellion against a dictator on Mars? Or is it just a fantasy implanted in his mind by the Rekall company? Fortunately, Paul Verhoeven never lets big questions get in the way of Arnie flexing his pecs while handing out some witty quips.


Memento (2000) / Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

And we couldn’t finish without an ode to the passing of time, which is certainly a concept inherently attached to marijuana from the baptismal font. Memento was the film with which Christopher Nolan began to draw attention to his work. In an attempt to explain this film, we could simply say that it goes backwards; but that would certainly be defying logic. It’ll surely blow your mind when you watch it high, even if just a little bit. But if it’s a matter of bad memory, Jim Carrey’s revolutionary film also turns time into an extremely abstract value. This is a wild journey and a movie that raises the question “What the hell is going on?” even when you’re sober, which makes it an exceptionally exciting way to pass the time. It is not a comedy like the others on this list but rather a kind of madness, so watch it at your own risk!


As you can see from this list, the combination of cinema and cannabis offers a unique
experience that transcends traditional viewing: it can make bad movies seem good and good
ones seem downright amazing. Hindering your concentration slightly in exchange for
heightening your senses (including humour) is usually a great deal. And, sometimes, your
brain may even emerge as the final collaborator in a film, generating different interpretations
of scenes that no writer or director could have foreseen, but which improve the visual
experience no end. So, for that and much more, using marijuana from the comfort of your
own home while enjoying a movie marathon is still one of the most exquisite forms of
relaxation known to man.

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Kannabia accept no responsibility for any illegal use made by third parties of information published. The cultivation of cannabis for personal consumption is an activity subject to legal restrictions that vary from state to state. We recommend consultation of the legislation in force in your country of residence to avoid participation in any illegal activity.