It’s easy to argue that every movie is enhanced when stoned, but Mary Jane won’t magically transform a horrible film into a great one. The best movies to watch high still require hooky premises, solid stories, and realistic characters.
Granted, smoking might make stilted acting or cheesy lines a little more bearable—but the basics still have to be in place to make a movie good, with or without weed.
With that in mind, take this opportunity to expand your stoner/cinematic horizons with this list of the best movies to watch high.
Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
This is a top pick from the franchise, but frankly, any Star Wars movie will do. After all, there’s a rich tradition of fans watching these movies stoned-out-of-this-world, so do your part to keep the tradition alive!
While Episode V is the best of the original trilogy, A New Hope started it all. It’s cinematic magic, with scenes that range from hilarious to mind-blowing, and actors who make it all work.
Luke Skywalker’s quest to learn the Force and destroy the Death Star with friends makes for an intoxicating few hours. Plus, that Obi-Wan death scene just hits different when you’re blazed.
And, if you haven’t seen it yet, the new trilogy is great too. The visuals are stunning, the plots are good (except for 9), and the acting is fantastic. It’s Disney stoner candy.
And when it comes to the prequels…well, it’s impossible to watch these sober. But high, it’s a healing experience that offers a chance to either forgive or reaffirm your hatred for George Lucas.
Blade Runner and Blade Runner 2049. Far more serious and artsy than Star Wars, the science-fiction and film-noir buffs need to watch this stuff stoned asap.
When it comes to watching adult animated films high, Heavy Metal is where it’s at. The R-rated, animated anthology film has influenced everyone from Elon Musk to good-old South Park.
Based on a magazine of the same name that’s been in print for 40 years, the world of Heavy Metal is filled with John Candy, in-your-face sexuality, and old-school metal. Get stoked!
The anthology format conveys an episodic, non-linear narrative filled with gruesome violence, oddity, and heroines. The film’s only constant is its villain, an evil green orb—so, yeah. Weird.
Nerds will appreciate it for its innovation: for rotoscoping, using different animation houses, and pre-dating MTV. Each story has a different animation style and the soundtrack is freaking sick.
Ultimately, Heavy Metal may not be a “cult classic.” Nevertheless, it’s an awesome ride. It’s not your typical movie, animated or otherwise…but it’s perfect for thrill-seeking, odd-ball stoners.
Watch it on Amazon Prime here.
Skip the sequel and watch Akira, a much gloomier, Japanese ‘80s animated film. Prepare to be submerged in what’s considered the greatest anime film ever.
Stephen King famously hated it; any self-respecting stoner will dig it. Kubrick’s 1980 film remains controversial, especially given news of the behind-the-scenes torture of Shelley Duvall.
Still, it’s amazing (as is the novel of the same name), even if Kubrick isn’t. Whether you’re taking it as-it-is or looking for moon-landing conspiracies, watching it ripped yields ideal results.
The film explores the insanity of Jack Torrance, played by Jack Nicholson, who goes HAM. Seriously, his acting either makes the film scary or funny, depending on how crazy you are.
Jack moves his family into the haunted and isolated Overlook hotel as the caretaker for the winter. The Overlook drives Jack to attempt murdering his family, as is a tradition in the hotel.
But weird, little Danny—Jack’s son—is too psychic to let that happen. It’s a wild trip that only gets wilder, thick with iconic scenes, so make sure to pack a fat bowl.
The other Kubrick film worth its weight in weirdness, 2001: A Space Odyssey, is an innovative piece of sci-fi and psychological WTF’s.
Shaun of the Dead
Okay, for a while there, the world desperately didn’t need any more zombie movies. But Shaun of the Dead is of a different breed, and it is hands-down the best zombie flick to watch stoned.
The film stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, who bravely spoofed George Romero before nerd culture was pop-culture. It set a new standard in horror-comedy, far exceeding Scary Movie.
The film has heart, demonstrated most notably by best friends, Shaun (Pegg) and Ed (Frost). Shaun is a sell-out looking for an escape, while Ed is a stoned couch-surfer looking to stay lazy.
The love between and surrounding the friends feels genuine, making the perfect backdrop for horror. Zombies not only get in the way of their drinking, but they also kill the people they love.
At the end of the day, Shaun of the Dead is equally heartwarming and heartbreaking. And it’s filled with so many hilarious moments that it’s impossible to not have fun while super baked.
If you’re into zombie movies that aren’t exactly scary, watch Romero’s Night of the Living Dead. You’ll laugh your way through some of the cheesy gore.
Okay: The Room is a terrible movie, but that’s what makes it so awesome to watch high. It’s a very weird adventure through the cinematic mind of director and actor Tommy Wiseau.
Although it flopped in 2003, The Room has become legendary. In 2018, re-screenings began across the nation, and they continue today—in part due to James Franco’s The Disaster Artist.
What makes The Room so terrible and hilarious at the same time is how seriously it takes itself. Its melodramatic scenes are immortalized through priceless memes in today’s internet economy.
The plot of The Room is largely irrelevant: it’s essentially about the betrayal of friends and lovers in San Francisco. But it’s the bad acting and awkward sex scenes that dazzle viewers.
Seriously, nothing can prepare you for how weird and awesome this movie is about to be. So get good and stoned and see what the hype is all about. You both will and won’t be disappointed.
If you’re into super weird, terrible movies that will be an absolute hoot to watch stoned, watch Rubber. It’s the best worst film about a killer tire, ever.
The best movies to watch high are, usually, ones you’d still enjoy regardless. Again, weed can’t make bad movies good…but it can make them bearable or downright hilarious. It can also turn good ones into great experiences, and make already great films truly mind-blowing.