Recreational substances are a part of the human experience. Part of the reason humanity decided to chill out and start farming was because they discovered beer, and wanted to make as much beer as possible. Some scientists believe our livers are designed to take some damage from alcohol and other chemicals in order for us to be more social animals. Thus, we’re genetically predisposed, heck, designed to get utterly baked and watch Cinemax all day.
But that doesn’t mean every movie is a good idea to watch. Here are five movies you should probably avoid the next time you’re getting mellow.
5. Altered States
Altered States sounds like an awesome stoner movie just from the title. Alter your state and then watch Altered States And then discover what the words â€œnightmare fuelâ€ mean!
Altered States is about a guy who locks himself into an isolation chamber in order to explore the primordial brain, our most basic instincts. In addition to turning him into a monkey for no explicable reason, it also results in some of the most horrific mind-bending imagery to be put on film outside of Japan. Just wait until you get a load of some of the Japanese movies on this list.
Probably the most memorable sight is a scene that starts out focused on an eye. OK, creepy. It pulls back and you see there are a bunch of eyes. Creepier. It pulls back further, and reveals it’s a goat’s head packed with eyes all carefully staring at you. Creepiest. Sure, until it pulls back to reveal this goat-head is filling in for Jesus’ noggin on a crucifix.
Yeah, this is a movie that doesn’t even need you to be stoned to give you a really bad trip. Imagine how it’ll end if you actually are.
Skidoo is part of a long, venerable genre of movies that try to preach against the dangers of drugs, while clearly demonstrating that everybody involved is either using those drugs or has absolutely no idea whatsoever what the hell they’re talking about. Reefer Madness is the grandpappy of this kind of movie, and if it’s the low budget, edgy pioneer of the genre, Skidoo is the big budget Hollywood mess it degrades into.
Skidoo is generally a black mark on everybody’s resume, featuring as it does direction by Otto Preminger (if he was using drugs wasn’t taking nearly enough), and starring Jackie Gleason as a mob boss who, while in jail, is forced to consume the dreaded LSD and goes on the single least accurate acid trip ever shot on film. It even has Groucho Marx, in one of his last roles, playing God. Not a stretch for Groucho.
Anyway, â€œSkidooâ€, sober, is hilarious. Skidoo wasted might actually have the intended cautionary effect. Imagine spending an hour and a half stoned watching a sweaty Jackie Gleason scream about bugs, and then ask yourself if you really want to experience that ever again.
3. Tetsuo: The Iron Man
We couldn’t put together a list like this without featuring at least one movie from Japan, so we picked the creepiest, grossest, most terrifying one imaginable. Yes, this is worse than anything you’ve found on the Internet. Yes, worse than Lemon Party. Yes, worse than One Guy One Jar.
Tetsuo is about a man who is slowly turning into metal, because he’s chock-full of repressed homosexual rage at Japanese society, amongst other things. Propriety and taste keep us from describing what exactly happens in this movie, but suffice to say vacuum hoses and drills are put to uses that will destroy your libido.
It also happens to be a really good and challenging movie, underneath the gore, sexual violence, and general pants-crapping, I-can’t-believe-anybody-came-up-with-that shots. Which would be great to talk about, if you weren’t curled up in the corner, picking at scabs and making sure they’re not turning into metal plates.
2. Sweet Movie
Sweet Movie is, allegedly an achievement in Yugoslavian film. We’re also pretty sure it’s one of, like, five Yugoslavian films ever made, but anyway… It’s from the sixties, which is already a problem for us in this condition. It combines surrealism and sexuality, which is a fancy way of saying that if you’ve never seen Dean Wormer’s gold-plated John Thomas taking a leak, well, you’re going to, big as life and twice as ugly.
The entire idea of Sweet Movie is that it’s all about how economic systems, capitalist or communist, corrupt sexuality for their own uses — which sounds like prime stoner fodder, but as you might have guessed, this is not a fun movie to watch without chemicals let alone with them. Unless watching a naked woman (Canadian pop sensation Carol Laure) drowning herself in chocolate is your thing, then hey, that’s you.
1. Any Disney Movie
Yeah, yeah, we know, Disney is beloved, getting obliterated at Disney screenings has been popular since â€œFantasiaâ€, what the heck is wrong with this list? But this only makes no sense because the Disney corporation is pretty good at promoting themselves as nice and family friendly, which they aren’t.
Pick a Disney movie, any Disney movie, and you’ll probably find a crapload of pure nightmare fuel. â€œFantasia?â€ The â€œNight on Bald Mountainâ€ sequence. â€œHunchback of Notre Dameâ€? The entire movie, especially the singing gargoyles and that creepy, creepy priest. â€œCinderellaâ€? That evil stepmother. â€œLion Kingâ€? An entire generation was traumatized by the death of Mufasa. â€œBambiâ€? Weird, abstract animation, plus that bit with his mom. â€œDumboâ€? Two words: Pink. Elephants.
We sat down and watched every single Disney cartoon and came to the conclusion that every single Disney cartoon exists to terrify small children because, we’re assuming, Uncle Walt found that absolutely hilarious. It’s the only explanation we’ve come up with that makes sense.
Now if you’ll excuse us, we’re going to go have a nightmare about pink elephants chasing us through a forest on Bald Mountain while avoiding hunters that have killed our mothers and buffalo stampedes that have killed our fathers while those damn singing gargoyles turn out a jaunty tune.