You are ready. You’ve set aside some time, made your purchase from Hemp Living, and surrounded yourself with the creature comforts you’ll need to properly celebrate. You are prepared for 4/20 (April 20th), the world’s unofficial holiday observing all things hemp.
You find the most comfortable spot in your home and anxiously anticipate the relaxation that lies ahead. You grab your phone or TV remote…
And then it happens.
You’re not ready.
YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT TO WATCH!
You begin to panic. With a seemingly infinite number of options at your fingertips, you realize you’ll now be spending the bulk of your holiday searching for content instead of enjoying it. Well, have no fear. Hemp Living is here for you! So let’s countdown the top 10 best stoner movies of all time to enjoy this 4/20!
THE RULES: What Makes a Stoner Movie 'The Best'?
What defines a stoner movie? While many may have theories, there are really only 3 rules:
1. We need a hero – Our main character(s) must be an unapologetic hemp enthusiast for at least the bulk of the film.
2. Embrace the culture – The film’s plot must celebrate all or several aspects of the culture & lifestyle of the 420-friendly.
3. No drama – Compelling love stories and life-affirming lessons must be kept to a minimum.
Now, let’s get to the countdown…
#10: The Stoned Age (1994)
Let’s get this out of the way, Dazed & Confused is not on this countdown. While it is a great film, it just has too many “coming of age” elements that break rule #3. So if you’re looking for a stoner movie that takes place over the course of one day in the 1970s but was filmed in the 1990s, The Stoned Age might be a better option. Following two stoners on a nightly quest for girls, booze, and weed, some might think the plot and dialogue in this one might be a little antiquated or offensive. Honestly, it kinda is, but so were the seventies.
Perfect strain pairing: Sweet Island Skunk
#9: Super Troopers (2001)
Though many might not consider it a traditional stoner movie, Super Troopers has main characters who smoke, a plot line that centers around cannabis, and practically no sappiness. The opening scene also serves as an absolutely perfect comedic recreation of every stoner’s worst fear.
Perfect strain pairing: Monkey Pie
#8: Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back (2001)
Anyone who enjoyed all of Kevin Smith’s earlier films (Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma) was elated when mainstay stoners of the series Jay & Silent Bob were finally given their own movie. What followed was an instant classic stoner road trip film with tons of celebrity cameos and an ample serving of hilarious hijinx.
Perfect strain pairing: Skywalker OG
#7: Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny (2006)
The only “musical-ish” movie in this countdown, Pick of Destiny tells the story of the formation and quest for rock greatness of stoners Jack Black and Kyle Gass, collectively known as Tenacious D. As they search for an elusive guitar pick, they encounter car chases, sasquatches, and a battle with the devil that concludes in the most 420-way imaginable.
Perfect strain pairing: Hemperor Jack
#6: Grandma’s Boy (2006)
A film far funnier than many would expect, Grandma’s Boy follows Alex, a pot-smoking video game tester forced to live with his grandmother after his roommate spends his rent money on Filipino prostitutes. Featuring great music, incredible comedic performances, and a very weed-friendly feel, this is definitely a hidden gem in the scope of stoner movies.
Perfect strain pairing: MTN DUU
#5 The Civil War on Drugs (2011)
Created by and starring comedy troupe “The Whitest Kids U Know,” The Civil War on Drugs is also one of the lesser-known films on this list. The movie follows two characters living in Virginia in the early 1860s. After discovering and falling in love with cannabis, they incorrectly believe that the Civil War is being fought over cannabis’s legalization status. Admittedly, a stoner movie with a subplot involving slavery might seem like a bad idea, but The Civil War on Drugs finds a way to make it work.
Perfect strain pairing: Northern Lights
#4: Half Baked (1998)
When a group of stoners (headed by Dave Chappelle) need to raise money to bail a friend out of jail, they stick to what they know; they sell weed. What follows is everything from flying dogs to the ghost of Jerry Garcia. Though the film does contain a love story and an eventual lifestyle change for our main character, Half Baked is easily one the funniest pot-friendly movies made and in many ways serves as a blueprint for the modern stoner flick.
Perfect strain pairing: 24K Gold Punch
#3: Pineapple Express (2008)
As the inspiration for one of today’s most popular strains, Pineapple Express took the structure of Half Baked and fine tuned it to near perfection. Combining action, comedy, Seth Rogen, and a whole lot of pot, the film seemingly has no lulls and delivers on all of the aspects that make stoner movies great. Keep your pipes and papers at close reach. You won’t want to put them down.
Perfect strain pairing: Pineapple Express (Duh!)
#2: Friday (1995)
If no one ever taught you the etiquette “puff puff give,” you probably learned it from Chris Tucker’s “Smokey.” Friday obviously delivers on comedy and action, but where it truly exceeds is in its presentation of cannabis culture. It seamlessly takes you to a time when a good friend, a day off, and a poorly-rolled joint were the only prerequisites for a good time. Combine that with one of the best soundtracks ever, and you’re left with the second best stoner movie ever made.
Perfect strain pairing: Grandaddy Purp
#1 Up In Smoke (1978)
The one that started it all. When you think “stoner movie,” it’s hard to not think about Cheech & Chong. The genre itself was established with the release of “Up in Smoke,” and the sequence involving Chong sharing a “quarter pounder” joint with Cheech has been constantly imitated both in other films and real life. Though the duo would go on to make several other great 420 friendly movies, “Up in Smoke” remains their opus.
Perfect strain pairing: Maui Wowie
So there it is. Let the debate begin. Whether you agree or disagree with the rankings, hopefully we here at Hemp Living introduced you to some new options; or helped you re-discover some old ones.
Enjoy your 4/20!