Friday, April 3, 2009

Super High Me

One of my favorite comedians is Doug Benson from Best Week Ever on VH1 and I really enjoy his commentary and comedy on that show. His latest CD, Professional Humoridian, is very funny. He also has a podcast called Doug Benson’s I Love Movies which is hilarious and showcases his love for movies.

In his act, he’s mentioned how he had an idea for a documentary film on the same level as Morgan Spurlock’s Super Size Me called Super High Me. In the film he brings up how someone approached him to actually do the movie after they heard his joke during his show.

Although shot amateurishly, the film delves into some facts and political aspects of marijuana. Doug
Benson is known for smoking weed, he claims it himself in his comedy routine, and most of his jokes are based on him being stoned and the perception one has while being stoned.

Like Spurlock in Super Size Me, what Benson wants to achieve in Super High Me is to stop smoking pot for 30 days—to sort of clean himself of the drug—then smoke pot continuously for 30 days (from when he wakes up until he goes to bed).

Throughout the first 30 days, he takes a series of tests during his sobriety, and the second 30 days, he takes the same tests, all to compare how he is when he’s sober and to compare when he’s under the influence.

In between some of the footage he gets, he interposes tidbits of information regarding the history of marijuana. I didn’t really look into how factual the statements were, but at least the film points out how the federal laws can overturn state laws; meaning, the medicinal laws of California can be squished by the federal law of marijuana being illegal.

As Doug Benson goes through his 30 days of not smoking cannabis, he gets a full physical, including checking his lung capacity and checking his memory. Amazingly, he’s able to get a doctor to be a part of this experiment and incredibly, he checks out well—seemingly not affected by his 17 years of pot smoking. He also goes on to take an SAT and scores very well, in fact above average.

Throughout the first 30 days, many of his friends, peers and cohorts ask him how he’s doing, believing that he might experience some sort of withdrawal. But he makes it clear that, although he wishes he can smoke pot during his 30 days of sobriety, he really doesn’t feel any addictive urge to smoke.

Interspersed throughout the film, you see his act playing out in different states. He interacts with the audiences in these different parts and gets their take on the medicinal marijuana laws, or lack thereof, in their state.

All the tests Benson takes while he is sober, he then gets to take while intoxicated on cannabis. I won’t spoil the outcomes of these tests and I don’t know if there is really anything proven after the fact. But the film as a whole is interesting and if you enjoy Doug Benson or the comedy of any other comedian who jokes about pot then you’ll enjoy this documentary.

My final “bit” on this pot-umentary? If you like Doug Benson and are akin to his type of observational humor, then you’ll like Super High Me.

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