How High understands the cultural difference between blacks and whites. If a black man wants to get his groove on with that rare breed of soul sister that actually likes Kevin Costner, a little weed goes a long way in keeping him awake during Field of Dreams. Everything comes at a price, though, which means SNL’s Tracy Morgan might just make a cameo appearance during a brother’s pot-induced version of the Costner film. The best stoner film since Friday, equal opportunity offender How High trades any semblance of plot in favor of ganja-stoked gags that crackle because they absurdly rework the college cliché through ghetto signifiers. While others may have used chocolate as a study aide, Silas (Method Man) and Jamal (Redman) ace their way into Harvard via smoking up. Their free-floating hallucinations are hysterical (occasionally witnessed by the sober sect), from a dwarf who dons Christmas attire to the Goliath-sized figure of Silas’s mother hovering over a Harvard/Yale rowing match. Unlike the similarly themed Legally Blonde, How High‘s academic infiltrators are smart from the beginning (they’re just unwilling to discard their Fubu for acceptance), suggesting academia should conform to the outsider rather than the other way around. First-time director Jesse Dylan has no real visual style yet he’s in firm control of his hyper-extended jokes—Silas and Jamal take revenge out on a Pee-wee-esque student patrolmen’s bike (which is put through the vehicular wringer). The filmmakers recognize only projectile vomit works nowadays while the Baby Powder pimp scene is about as wicked and honest a pot-moment since Ashton Kutcher tried to order Chinese food in Dude, Where’s My Car?. That said, How High is perhaps best savored during that peak high where a Costner landscape begins to resemble a Malick existential crisis.
- Jesse Dylan
- Dustin Abraham
- Method Man, Redman, Lark Voorhies, Trieu Tran, Justin Urich, Al Shearer, Essence Atkins, Obba Babatundé, Fred willard, Anna Maria Horsford, Patrice Fisher, Sacha Kemp, Mike Epps, Chris Elwood, Hector Elizondo, Jeffrey Jones, Spalding Gray, Kathy Wagner
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