While this doc isn't a sober and scientific look at psychedelics, it fulfills some of that in a good way. It uses comedy and satire to make its points. If you are looking for serious information about them, then look elsewhere. While there are some facts here, this doc uses mostly tripping anecdotes from famous people, but also includes a psychotherapist and Deepak Chopra (not an expert on anything, IMO, and the one low point of this doc). It satirizes ridiculous 60s & 70s anti-drug movies and propaganda by winding an LSD After School Special throughout the film, which is as original as these things can be, and very humorous.
The filmmakers are careful not to proselytize psychedelics, although they come close, but the "it's not for everyone" warnings are here, as well as the usual "set and setting" importance. There is emphasis on psychedelics not being the "usual" drug you use to escape, but an internal "trip" in every sense of the word, with planning and intent necessary.
Even though the release date of this is shown as 2020 and "new" by Netflix, Carrie Fisher and Anthony Bourdain are both in it. She died in 2016 and Bourdain in 2018. Fisher is really funny, as always, and one of the high points of the interviews. Bourdain just looks depressed, which begs the question of why he was left in this doc. Kind of bad taste, due to the manner of his passing, and affected my rating a little.
I think the audience for this is probably people who have experience with psychedelics. Otherwise it will have little meaning. I've had most of the experiences chronicled here, including the cliche "McDonald's trip" (I didn't know it was a 'thing'!). Odd to see Sting in a somewhat reflective, very personal state, although psychedelics no doubt have a huge job making a dent in *his* ego. So kind of ironic interviewing him for this doc. The other people are entertaining and usually funny.
The animation is very well done and the pacing very good. I have done a lot of psychedelics and was mostly a "seeker" with the intent to learn from psychedelics, as are most of the people in this doc. If you are so serious as to be offended by a comedic look at psychedelics...yeow. You have GOT to have a sense of humor while tripping!
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