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Paul Groves (Peter Fonda), a television commercial director, is in the midst of a personality crisis. His wife Sally (Susan Strasberg) has left him and he seeks the help of his friend John (Bruce Dern), a self-styled guru who's an advocate of LSD. Paul asks John to be the guide on his first "trip". John takes Paul to a "freak-out" at his friend Max's (Dennis Hopper) pad. Splitting the scene, they score some acid from Max and return to John's split-level pad with an indoor pool. Paul experiences visions of sex, death, strobe lights, flowers, dancing girls, witches, hooded riders, a torture chamber, and a dwarf. He panics but John tells him to "go with it, man." Would you trust John? Written by
Bruce Dern's line "Turn off your mind, relax, and float downstream" is from The Beatles's song "Tomorrow Never Knows", which John Lennon wrote as a summation of his reading of "The Psychedelic Experience", which in turn was adapted from "The Tibetan Book of the Dead". See more »
[Holding an orange up to the horizon]
That's the sun in my hands, man! Oh, it gives off an orange cloud of light that just flows right out over the sea! Wow!
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This virtually plotless film is about an advertising executive, going through a divorce, who decides to experiment with LSD.
Most of the film, and obviously the whole reason behind making it, are the psychedelic "trip" sequences. That is the main problem with this film. While the hallucinations initially look impressive and quite enjoyably surreal, they lose their impact quickly and soon become quite dull.
However, the film can be quite enjoyable as a snapshot of late sixties Californian psychedelia (all the weird, colourful paintings on walls, and almost every second sentence ending in "man").
Peter Fonda is quiet bland as the executive, but Dennis Hopper is worth watching in his role as a drug dealer.
It is worth watching if you're interested in late-sixties psychedelia, LSD, Peter Fonda or drug movies, others may want to pass.
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