Heady Entertainment: “Sorry to Bother You” Burns Bright and “Who Is America?” Sizzles
All the pot-friendly pop culture fit to smoke to! From the return of Sacha Baron Cohen, to the latest LP from Chief Keef, this week’s newest entertainment releases are nothing but hot fire.
Published on July 13, 2018

Welcome back to Heady Entertainment, MERRY JANE's weekly guide to just-released movies, books, and music — all fresh, dank, and THC-friendly. In specific, we choose our picks based on how they can enhance your combined consumption of cannabis and entertainment.

For this week's edition, Sorry to Bother You blazes into another history-making weekend of weed-ready wonders; Sacha Baron Cohen re-revolutionizes political pranksterism with Who Is America?; Chief Keef scorches forth a new long player titled Mansion Musick; and the extreme horror classic Last House on the Left gets a special edition Blu-ray ready to be watched with bong in hand. So let's get straight — but not "straight" to this week's fresh-rolled recommendations.

"Skyscraper" (2018)
Director: Rawson Marshall Thurber
Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Neve Campbell, Chin Han

The Rock does Die Hard by way of The Towering Inferno — in 3D! And, this time, he's only got one leg! So what's not to smoke to? Skyscraper delivers the perfect nonstop sensory overload that corresponds so well with cannabis consumption just prior to settling down with an armload of munchies at the multiplex.

In Skyscraper, Dwayne Johnson is an ex-Marine security expert who lost one leg years earlier to a terrorist bomb, so he's plenty not pleased when a similar band of explosion-happy baddies show up at the latest 220-floor Hong Kong mega-tower he's in charge of guarding. So just ease back and let the twin miracles of CGI and THC take over from there.

"Sorry to Bother You" (2018)
Director: Boots Riley
Cast: Lakeith Stanfield, Tessa Thompson, Terry Crews

Yes, Sorry to Bother You opened in theaters last week, but MERRY JANE is going to see it again this weekend — freshly lit — as this booming breakthrough requires multiple hits.

Boots Riley, founder of political hip-hop collective The Coup, makes his debut as a writer-director with this one-of-a-kind, sci-fi satire on race, class, reality TV, telemarketing, corporate omnipotence, and essentially every aspect of the madness that defines struggling and striving in 2018.

Lakeith Stanfield and Tessa Thompson deliver iconic performances starting with frame one, but every element of Sorry is brilliant and inspiring. So is the fact that its numerous sudden jabs and knockout twists have stayed secret this long. So go and catch the stoner movie of the year — maybe even the decade — and then keep your lips locked tight about the surprises it packs. You know what to pack yourself to make that easy.


"Who Is America?"
Creator and Star: Sacha Baron Cohen
Watch It: Showtime

In the greatest news on the U.S. homefront since anti-pot laws starring collapsing nationwide, Sacha Baron Cohen has suddenly sprung up on TV again with Who Is America? It's a brand new, serrated-edged satirical interview series in the Ali G tradition with Cohen donning disguises to question real-world political movers and shakers... and capture their terrifying, all-too-real-world answers.

The clip of Dick Cheney autographing a waterboard kit has already gone viral, and Sarah Palin is making a stink about getting suckered herself. But Cohen's kept the details on the downlow while the show was in production for the past year, so just pack your pipe on Sunday night and smoke up along with everybody else to discover what he's got loaded.

"Drug Lords": Season 2
Creator: Mike Welsh
Watch It: Netflix

Drug Lords storms back to Netflix with more documentary installments on controlled substances and colorful combatants on both sides of the law who are out, in turn, to control each other — as well as the paying public. Subjects this time include the notorious El Chapo; Jemeker Thompson, the so-called "Crack Queen of L.A."; Christopher Coke, the overlord of Jamaica's underworld; and Klaas Brunisma, a brutal crime kingpin in deceptively dope-friendly Amsterdam.

"Harlots": Season 2
Creator: Alison Newman, Moira Buffini
Cast: Samantha Morton, Lesly Manville, Jessica Brown Findlay
Watch It: Hulu

Savvy, stylish, and loaded with implicit commentary on our own sexually tumultuous times, Harlots takes place in a 1763 British brothel where the working girls battle against the forces of oppression as frontline defenders of erotic freedom. Enjoy your own modern-day intoxicants as you take in Harlots' lushly-rendered era of absinthe and opium.

"How It Ends" (2018)
Director: David M. Rosenthal
Cast: Theo James, Forest Whitaker, Kat Graham
Watch It: Netflix

As the apocalypse goes down, sci-fi action explodes in How It Ends, a new Netflix thriller with intense paranoia potential (so adjust your puffing accordingly). Theo Von of the Divergent film series teams up with director David M. Rosenthal, who helmed The Last King of Scotland, the 2006 mind-melter about African dictator Idi Amin.

"The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter" (2018)
Director; Jody Hill
Cast: Josh Brolin, Danny McBride, Montana Jordan
Watch It: Netflix

Director Jody Hill and star/co-writer Danny McBride, the duo responsible for comedy classics on the order of Eastbound and Down and Vice Principals, unleash their toke-up style on Netflix with The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter. Josh Brolin stars as Buck Ferguson, a hunting show host, who takes his 12-year-old son (Montana Jordan) and trusty cameraman (McBride) out for a woodland excursion that erupts in an onslaught of comedic disasters.

Cult-Classic Reissues

"The Last House on the Left" (1972)
Director: Wes Craven
Cast: Sandra Peabody, Lucy Grantham, David Hess
Get It: MVD

Wes Craven's fright flick debut The Last House on the Left introduced not just a new filmmaking talent, but an entirely new take on horror that continues to bug out all who come across it. Two teen girls get kidnapped under the cruelest of circumstances — a guy offers to get them weed, then leads them to psycho perverts. The girls' hideous fates ultimately ignite parental vengeance against the perpetrators that includes murder-by-blowjob. Smoke once to up the paranoia factor, then smoke again when it's over for some relief-via-sweet-leaf from the intensity you just endured.

"Doom Asylum" (1987)
Director: Richard Friedman
Cast: Patty Mullen, Michael Rogen, Kristin Davis
Get It: MVD

Doom Asylum is a beyond-insane, comedy-sprinkled, splatter-horror blowout about a presumed-dead dude named Mitch Hansen (Michael Rogen) who wakes up during his own autopsy and takes off on a slaughter spree for the next ten years. Penthouse model Patty Mullen (Frankenhooker herself) gets mixed up in Mitch's madness, as does a punk band that uses his abandoned psych hospital as their practice space. Plus, the movie was filmed in an actual old insane asylum (at least according to the producers)!


"The Little World of Humongo Bongo"
By George A. Romero
Get It: Quimby's Bookstore

The Little World of Humongo Bongo is big news for horror fans who love to get high. It's colorful kid's book written and illustrated by Night of the Living Dead zombie meister George Romero — and you won't have to wonder too hard about what he was smoking when he came up with it. The Humongo Bongo of the title is a fire-breathing giant who lives on the planet Tongo. All's cool until a race of tiny beings called the Minus discover Humongo and attempt to worship him as their god. It's a tight little parable furthered powered by Romero's trippy, hand-drawn pictures.


"Mansion Musick"
By Chief Keef
Get It: Chief Keef Online

Yes, Mansion Musick is also the title of a mixtape Chief Keef released back in 2014. And, yes, Keef dropped the Ottopsy barely a month ago. Still, the just-unleashed 2018 Mansion Musick album pumps out 11 fresh rounds of Chief Keef at top command. So don't question his methods: just get simultaneously intoxicated, elevated, and blown away by his music.

By Lotic
Get It: Bandcamp

Lotic, a Berlin-based, gender-liberated composer, performer, and "ferocious femme" sometimes known as J'Kerian Morgan, blasted through all previously-conceived limitations of dance music with the 2015 EP, Heterocetera. Now, with the full-length Power, Lotic smokes even that previous high, conjuring infinite webs of avant-garde sounds and sensations in countless unexpected directions over 11 tracks. Drop what you're holding — in the hallucinogenic sense — and let Lotic remake you here.

"Rich Forever 4"
by Rich the Kid, Famous Dex, and Jay Critch
Get it: iTunes

Proving that the fourth time can, indeed, be the charm, Rich Forever 4 delivers what any discerning aficionado of the "Rich Forever" series wants to listen to while lighting up. The latest mixtape teams the roster's headliners with heavy-hitters, including guest YBN Almighty Jay, for a combined burst of intensely weed-worthy beats, rhymes, and dope times.

Follow Mike McPadden on Twitter

Mike McPadden
Mike McPadden is the author of "Heavy Metal Movies" and the upcoming "Last American Virgins." He writes about movies, music, and crime in Chicago. Twitter @mcbeardo
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