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Review by Steve Rhodes
½ star out of 4
If ever there was a movie whose message we didn't need, it's Jesse Dylan's
HOW HIGH, which glorifies drug usage. Never has spending your whole life
getting wasted looked like so much fun. In my packed audience of
college-aged students and younger, they identified with every joke, which
was quite scary. I felt like I did at my first Adam Sandler screening,
completely out of place. Every time the audience was roaring, I was
Even if you can get completely past the appropriateness of the movie's
morals, or actually lack thereof, the film itself is pretty pathetic. Jokes
come from those old cinematic clichés -- pratfalls and flatulence. About as
original as the movie ever gets is an exploding pigeon poop episode.
The plot concerns two stoners, Silas (Method Man) and Jamal (Redman), who
get perfect test scores on their college board THCs, thanks to the help of a
stoner ghost. Since they can choose any college they want, they pick
Harvard, giving the movie's plot some superficial similarities to the
brilliantly written and acted LEGALLY BLONDE. But, trust me. HOW HIGH is
no LEGALLY BLONDE.
HOW HIGH, which might be thought of as a Cheech and Chong movie for this
generation, does have a couple of good moments. My favorite is the
performance by Spalding Gray. He plays a self-loathing white liberal who
teaches Black Studies. A genuine masochist, the professor is never happier
than when Silas and Jamal heap verbal abuse on him in class.
HOW HIGH runs about an hour and a half. It is rated R for "pervasive drug
use and language, and for sexual dialogue." I wish it had drawn an NC-17.
High school students have no business seeing this movie -- even if they are
older than 17.
Copyright © 2001 Steve Rhodes