Seth Rogen's recent mellow-harshing bust notwithstanding, there has arguably never been a better time to be a pot aficionado in the movies. Or at the movies. Or returning to the movies — or to the road, anyway, as evinced by new reports of Cheech and Chong's cannabis comeback. Basically anyone who can approximate stoner bliss is ready for prime time these days, from the principals of Harold and Kumar to Pineapple Express to Smiley Face (to say nothing of Hall of Famers The Big Lebowski and Up in Smoke), notes a pot-film scholar who miraculously focused long enough to taxonomize and rate them:
Potheads and action? Inherently comic, for as most anyone who has lived in a college dorm can attest, stoners are to action as the Tilt-a-Whirl is to driving. To enjoy stoner silliness is not to advocate an unlawful activity (says one whose post-college pot experience is limited to the Revereware-in-the-kitchen variety). My sentiments about marijuana are pretty much like those about guns. I firmly believe in their control - except on-screen, where they are crucial for entertainment value. Just as you can be antigun and enjoy Dirty Harry, you don't have to be stoned to enjoy stoner comedy.
We were surprised, however, to not see the Defamer-approved instant classic Pineapple Express on the list of all-time great stoner comedies, headed up by Lebowski, Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure and Dazed and Confused. History will surely remember otherwise — even if, by cruel definition, its core constituency cannot.
- Smoking the funny stuff [Philadelphia Inquirer]