Marijuana Policy Project
Curved Papers

The Top 28 Stoner Movies of All Time

15. Road Trip (2000)

Director: Todd Phillips
Cast: Breckin Meyer, Amy Smart, Paolo Constanza, Tom Green
Box office: $68.5 million
Plot: Hijinks ensue as college students hot-tail it from Boston to Austin. Rubin (Costanza) meets a talking, pot-smoking dog along the way. Phillips went on the become one of Hollywood's top directors, helming The Hangover series, Joker and Old School.

 

14. Traffic (2000)

Director: Steve Soderbergh
Cast: Michael Douglas, Benicio Del Toro, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Erica Christensen, Don Cheadle, Topher Grace, Luis Guzman, Steven Bauer, Dennis Quaid, Amy Irvin
Box office: $124.1 million
Plot: Winner of four Academy Awards (but not Best Picture) in 2001, Soderbergh's drug-war epic clicks on a number of levels. Newly appointed drug czar Robert Wakefield (Douglas) has troubles at the Mexico border and at home where his daughter (Christensen) has developed a crack habit. Meanwhile, a Mexican cop (Del Toro) deals with corruption South of the border and a DEA team makes a big bust in San Diego. It all adds up to an indictment of prohibition when Wakefield decides to quit in protest. Soderbergh won the Best Director Oscar for Traffic and went on to direct Ocean's Eleven, Ocean's Twelve and Ocean's Thirteen.

 

13. Midnight Express (1978)

Director: Alan Parker
Cast: Brad Davis
Box office: $35 million
Plot: Before he wrote Scarface, Oliver Stone tackled the controversial subject of Bill Hayes' real-life arrest for smuggling hash and incarceration in a filthy Turkish jail for five years until he managed to escape. Davis dives in to the role of a lifetime for him, and kicks up his feet at the miraculous ending. Over the years Hayes has criticized the movie's accuracy,  but it's certainly a gripping druggy drama, whatever the actual truth is. Parker went on to direct Fame, Birdy, Mississippi Burning, The Commitments and Evita.

 

12. Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

Director: Amy Heckerling
Cast: Sean Penn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Phoebe Cates, Judge Reinhold
Box office: $27 million
Plot: Cameron Crowe's script introduced the world to surfer stoner Jeff Spicoli (played by Penn), one of the many characters in this high-school saga set in California in the '80s. "All I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz and I'm fine," he famously declares. In another fun scene, he and his friends spill out of a hot-boxed van. Heckerling went on to direct Clueless. Penn went on to win Academy Awards for Dead Man Walking and Milk. Crowe went on to write and direct Almost Famous.

 

11. The Harder They Come (1972)

Director: Perry Henzell
Cast: Jimmy Cliff, Carl Bradshaw
Box office: NA
Plot: Ivan (Cliff), an aspiring reggae singer, is persecuted by the police for selling ganja. Cliff songs - "You Can Get It If You Really Want," "Sitting in Limb" - dominate the soundtrack. Henzell's only other movie was No Place Like Home.

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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of CelebStoner.com, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.