“I was super into watching stoner movies when I was too young,” Kristen Stewart explained prior to introducing a list of what she would consider her favourite stoner comedy films.
The actress, who has been in front of the screen since a child with roles in films such as Panic Room and Speak, ramped up her major rise while appearing in 2007 indie effort Into the Wild. It was the year later, however, when Stewart’s fame grew to astronomical heights as she took the lead in the immensely popular Twilight series of films.
The rise for Stewart was fast and furious. While the box office figures continued to rise, so did the intrusive headlines into her personal life. “You can Google my name, and one of the first things that comes up is images of me sitting on my front porch smoking a pipe with my ex-boyfriend and my dog,” she once said in an interview with Vanity Fair in 2012 about some of the negative press that has surrounded her at times. “It was taken the day the movie came out. I was no one. I was a kid. I had just turned 18.”
She added: “The next day, it was like I was a delinquent slimy idiot, whereas I’m kind of a weirdo, creative Valley girl who smokes pot… big deal.”
Fast forward a few years and the bizarre furore around Stewart smoking weed had been transformed as she joined the cast of Nima Nourizadeh film American Ultra alongside Jesse Eisenberg. The film, a comedy drama in its own right, offered Stewart the chance to change the professional opinion of her style in what was a big budget project.
Moving on from roles in the past, Stewart admitted that playing a stereotypical ‘stoner’ challenge her acting abilities in ways she hadn’t previously experience: “There’s a slack in the face that you can’t fake,” she explained.
While the move to play that role may have come of left field in comparison to her previous work, Stewart has always had a special place in her heart for the stoner sub-genre of comedic cinema. In an interview with GQ a couple of years ago, the actress picked out five of her five favourite stoner films of all time.
Kristen Stewart’s five favourite stoner comedy films:
Half Baked – Tamra Davis, 1998
Kicking off Stewart’s list we have Tamra Davis’ classic Half Baked. The film, released in1998 and starring the likes of Dave Chappelle, Jim Breuer, Harland Williams and Guillermo Díaz, was a major flop at the box office but later gained in notoriety and picked up a cult following.
When speaking about Half Baked, she said: “I was super into watching stoner movies when I was too young. Half Baked, the classics. I was a little aspiring stoner.”
Official Film Synopsis: “When a member of their crew gets arrested for killing a New York City police horse by feeding it junk food, three slackin’ stoners are forced to get off their butts and raise bail by selling pot stolen from a pharmaceutical lab. It’s a risky plan but, hey, these are stand-up guys who would do anything to help out a friend in need.”
Up In Smoke – Lou Adler, 1978
We couldn’t have a stoner comedy list without including the godfathers of the genre; Cheech and Chong.
Starring the likes of Cheech Marin, Tommy Chong, Edie Adams, Strother Martin and more, Up In Smoke marked the first feature film of counter-culture comedy duo Cheech and Chong and, like our previous entry, the film flopped upon release and rose to fame in the years that followed.
Speaking about the film, Stewart had the same suspicions as the rest of us: “I think Cheech and Chong are definitely smoking real weed in that movie. It is actually, really, truly about smoking pot.”
Official Film Synopsis: “An unemployed pot-smoking slacker and amateur drummer, Anthony Stoner (Tommy Chong) ditches his strict parents and hits the road, eventually meeting kindred spirit Pedro de Pacas (Cheech Marin).
“While the drug-ingesting duo is soon arrested for possession of marijuana, Anthony and Pedro get released on a technicality, allowing them to continue their many misadventures and ultimately compete in a rock band contest, where they perform the raucous tune ‘Earache My Eye’.”
This Is The End – Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, 2013
In modern day terms, you could argue that the directing duo of Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg picked up the mantel of stoner comedies from Cheech and Chong. Their 2013 film This Is The End marked a direction debut for the now prolific filmmakers and propelled them onto the Hollywood main stage.
“It’s not, like, universally loved, but I really thought it was fucking hilarious.,” Steward said of the film. “I like all those actors, and they’re letting it all out, and it’s really a trip.”
With the now usual suspects of Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Danny McBride and more starring, the film bucks to commercial trend on this list and, unlike the ones that came before, This Is The End was an immediate blockbuster.
Official Film Synopsis: “In Hollywood, actor James Franco is throwing a party with a slew of celebrity pals. Among those in attendance are his buddies Jonah Hill, Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, Danny McBride and Craig Robinson.
“Suddenly, an apocalypse of biblical proportions erupts, causing untold carnage among Tinseltown’s elite and trapping Franco’s party in his home. As the world they knew disintegrates outside, cabin fever and dwindling supplies threaten to tear the six friends apart.”
Smiley Face – Gregg Araki, 2007
Following the adventures of a young actress who has accidentally devoured a number of space cakes, Gregg Araki’s 2007 film stars Anna Faris in the lead alongside the likes of Danny Masterson, John Krasinski, Adam Brody and more.
“It’s a really good stoner movie that Anna Faris did,” Stewart said in hew GQ feature. “She’s so hilarious. She plays this, like, imbecile—this really, really dumb stoner girl—and it’s just a day in her life.”
Official Film Synopsis: “Jane, a struggling but perpetually stoned actress, has a busy day ahead. She has several important tasks on her list, including buying more marijuana. Even though she already has a good start on the day’s planned drug use, she eats her roommate’s pot-laced cupcakes and embarks on a series of misadventures all over Los Angeles.”
Super Troopers – Jay Chandrasekhar, 2001
Directed by and starring Jay Chandrasekhar, Super Troopers was commercial success if, perhaps, not so much of a critical one. The film made enough money for Fox to push for a sequel which, predictably perhaps, didn’t go so well.
Stewart says of the film: “I really love Super Troopers. I snuck into that movie as a kid and got kicked out and had to wait to see it later.”
Official Film Synopsis: “Always looking for action, five over-enthusiastic but under-stimulated Vermont State Troopers raise hell on the highway, keeping motorists anxiously looking in their rear-view mirrors.
“Between an ongoing feud with the local cops over whose you-know-what is bigger, and the state government wanting to shut them down, the ‘Super Troopers’ find themselves precariously and hilariously heading toward calamity as they try to avoid extinction.”