Kiss Me Deadly

Sure, you can giggle your way to stoner bliss with tried-and-true movies like Up in Smoke and Half Baked, but just because you like to get high doesn’t mean that idiotic jokes about comically oversized joints are all that’s available to the discerning pot-smoking cinephile. The world of film is full of all kinds of strange, sublime, scary, silly treats, so here’s to putting something special inside that vaporizer, kicking back in your comfiest seat, and taking a two-hour trip to parts unknown.


Head

Who knew that the most psychedelic of all the post-Hard Day’s Night films trying to cash in on the success of a popular rock group would come from the Monkees? Directed by Bob Rafelson from a script co-written by actor Jack Nicholson, this chewy piece of stream-of-consciousness bubblegum from 1968 offers no point whatsoever, other than to poke hearty fun at the band’s prefabricated image and to throw in a cameo featuring a cow-toting Frank Zappa. ROBERT HAM


The Adventures of Prince Achmed

German animator Lotte Reiniger’s 1926 film is the oldest surviving animated feature, and it uses a breathtaking cut-out silhouette technique that’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen. A magic adventure featuring witches, snakes, and sorcerers, it’s the perfect world to get sucked into with the help of a little something-something. Best of all, it’s silent, so you can choose your own soundtrack—but our recommendation is the one that Swedish band Dungen composed specifically for the film (and performed live at 2017’s Pickathon), which can be found on their most recent album, Haxan. NED LANNAMANN


Kiss Me Deadly

Few movies have achieved the sheer white-knuckle sensation of weed-induced paranoia as Robert Aldrich’s 1955 noir/sci-fi masterpiece. A murder mystery set in motion by a mysterious hitchhiker, it’s got a glowing suitcase at the center of its story that’s been referenced in several subsequent films, including Pulp Fiction, Repo Man, and Guardians of the Galaxy. The slightly-more-violent-than-you’d-expect private-eye story becomes stranger and scarier as it goes on, with an ending that’ll blow your pot-addled mind. NL


Altered States

This one is maybe a little on the nose, since this 1980 film concerns a psychologist (William Hurt) ingesting unhealthy amounts of psychotropic drugs and hopping into an isolation tank. But once madman British director Ken Russell’s freaked-out visuals get cooking, you’ll be agog with wonder. We can’t necessarily endorse popping a quick microdose to round out your buzz, but hey, we’re not your dad. RH


The Neon Demon

Our cultural obsession with beauty and stardom is given a surreal spin by director Nicolas Winding Refn in this 2016 horror flick. The dream-like path of aspiring model Jesse (Elle Fanning) as she maneuvers through the uglier, bloodier side of Hollywood is perfect for the peak of your high. Just make sure you have the volume cranked to immerse yourself in Cliff Martinez’s cloudy electronic score. RH


Death Rides a Horse

Guilio Petroni’s 1967 spaghetti western is basically a ripoff of For a Few Dollars More, with ultimate badass Lee Van Cleef even playing the same exact role (thankfully, the ridiculous demon weed the villain smokes in Sergio Leone’s movie is nowhere to be found here). Ennio Morricone’s gorgeous score and the film’s surreal imagery, including outlaws buried up to their necks in sand, make this a good one for twisting up something special—especially since it’ll dull the rough edges of John Phillip Law’s wooden acting. NL


Enter the Void

To be clear, Gaspar Noé’s 2009 movie ain’t that great. Unless you enjoy two-and-a-half-hour films featuring a disembodied spirit that, at one point, floats into a cock that is penetrating his sister. However, the drifting quality of the action is a great accompaniment to a night zonked out on the couch. Take a couple of deep bong rips before pressing play and you’re good to go. RH


Classe Tous Risques

The lean, economic plot-engine of Claude Sautet’s 1960 gangster-on-the-run thriller just makes more sense when you’re stoned. This French/Italian film is as hard-boiled as it gets, as Lino Ventura attempts to outrun the authorities, but can’t escape the noose tightening around him and his family. The black-and-white photography provides a crisp, alert counterpoint to your buzz, and the nonchalance of the final scene is as heavy as it gets, man. NL


Excalibur

King Arthur’s been done dirty in the movies—Guy Ritchie pretty much just made sure we won’t see another serious adaptation for at least another decade—but John Boorman’s weird, woolly, overpacked 1981 film gets closest to the very strange heart of England’s most famous fictional king. At turns theatrical, eerie, broadly comic, and stunningly gorgeous, Excalibur successfully evokes a slightly unreal mythic world that makes perfect sense when you’re under the influence of some of god’s greenest. NL


Häxan

This little surrealist wonder dates back to 1922, when Swedish filmmaker Benjamin Christensen brought the world a pseudo-documentary glimpse into tales of witchcraft in medieval culture. Come for the dazzling, ahead-of-its-time imagery depicting Hades and witches soaring through the air; stay for the nudity and Christensen’s hilariously outdated psychological conclusions. RH


Viy

Another tale of witches, this time from Russia, this 1967 oddity is given visual splendor by directors Konstantin Yershov and Georgi Kropachyov. To get into the labyrinthine plot adapted from a Nikolai Gogol book is pointless; just jump in with both feet and enjoy the horror-like atmosphere and impressive visual effects. RH


A Field in England

With Shakespearean dialect, black-and-white cinematography, and a very strange, minimal story about alchemy, war, warlocks, and magic mushrooms, 2013’s A Field in England is among the weirdest entries in maverick British director Ben Wheatley’s off-the-wall filmography. But when the hallucination sequence kicks in at the end, you’ll be glad you stuck it out. NL


Battlefield Earth

There are few things better than enjoying a laughably bad film while stoned to the gills. And you can’t get more hilariously misguided than this 2000 adaptation of L. Ron Hubbard’s sci-fi shitshow starring John Travolta at his hammiest. Make sure you find the theatrical version, which keeps in the most over-the-top moments that they excised for the home video release. You’ll thank me later. RH


Conan the Destroyer

This kid-friendly sequel to the much darker Conan the Barbarian once again stars Arnold Schwarzenegger as Robert E. Howard’s pulp-fantasy hero. Much maligned in light of its predessor, 1984’s Conan the Destroyer remains a light-hearted, goofy romp on its own terms. Trust us, it’s inanely delightful, with charming elements such as Grace Jones, an irritating teenage princess, bizarre castles, a magic gem, and André the Giant as... well, a giant. If you’re looking for something to plant a large, stupid grin onto your face, look no further. NL