This assessment is dispensed in dialogue that sounds as clunky as the shrink at the end of “Psycho” trying to explain Norman’s condition. A lot of writer/directorCraig Pryce’s recreation of this real life event has the awkward, rote nature of a “Very Special Episode” of a 1980s American sitcom. Each of the main characters comes with their hopes, dreams, characteristics, and pasts neatly packaged. Everyone has a special plan for the money they will receive should they finish the project. The antagonists are rendered just as simplistically, though an attempt to flesh out one of these characters comes so far out of left field as to seem spliced in from another, far more preachy film. Thankfully, the movie takes a neutral stance on weed consumption; any issues that arise are due to the experiment being tampered with in ways its participants did not consent to when they signed up. A constant source of amusement is how frustrated the government is when it’s reported that the stoners are working harder at their menial jobs than the marijuana-free control group.
Hippie-swooning temptations aside, I remained tethered to “The Marijuana Conspiracy” thanks to the excellent performances by the actresses playing the main roles. They transcend their thinly-drawn characterizations and display the convincing level of camaraderie shared by a group who have gone through trouble together and emerged victorious at the end. There are numerous scenes of them getting blazed twice a day in the name of science, as well as moments when the women just talk and relate to each other. Pryce uses the latter to deliver exposition and predictable explanations of intent, but the actors sell the material and make it richer than it would play otherwise.
我们遇到短发，街头聪明的玛丽（Julia Sarah Stone) first. She’s giving advice to an out-of-her-element younger woman on a street in Toronto. “Go home,” she tells her, offering some money to get a bus ticket back to safer environs. This experiment will not only give Mary a place to stay, but money she can use for her own place once she’s finished. Next, we meet Mary’s coworker, Jane (Brittany Bristow）因为她正在被传递给她在她的公司应得的促销活动。她的老板告诉她，他们害怕她怀孕了。他还引用了鲍勃·迪伦, calls her a “broad,” and is dismissive before she cusses him out and quits. Lastly, we meet Mourinda (Tymika Tafari.），请求的黑人女孩，谁直言不讳，乐趣，并在她羡慕的黑人中保持她的关节。“他们从未在这里搜索！”她告诉她的男朋友。“因为他们害怕它。”
与此同时,巴里医生会议政府办公室做事ial to discuss the experiment that will bring these young women together, a study conducted on 18-25 year olds. The official makes no attempt to hide that he’s hoping for a result that can be skewed for his benefit, yet even after Barry calls out the ruse, he still signs up for this “to see how everything plays out.” That’s what behaviorists do, he tells us. While not a full antagonist, Barry is still bad news, upping the THC content in order to hasten negative side effects in his subjects. When the group bands together in protest, demanding to know what is happening to their bodies or else they’ll quit, Barry breaks their union by offering more money to those who complete the study.
In fact, all of the men we meet range from skeevy to sleazy to outright hateful. On the skeevy spectrum, though the film thinks he’s harmless, is Adam (卢克·贝利克), a young guy Barry hires as one of his observers. The women will have observers, medical and scientific, watching them at all times to monitor their progress. The observed folks find this creepy. Adam especially likes to monitor Janice (Kyla Avril Young.）在一个场景中，谁在一个场景中显然不舒服，因为他无法让他该死的眼睛在他的头上。即使是其他团体成员也指出，他看起来像Tex Avery卡通的狼。He’s the wrong type of guy to be hanging around a bunch of women who may not always have their wits about them, and while “The Marijuana Conspiracy” does its best to keep his romantic matters consensual, it’s a bad idea that distracts us with an unnecessary subplot.
An even more unnecessary subplot involves Dr. Spencer (Paulino Nunes）和护士爱丽丝琼斯（Marie Ward). Nurse Jones’ stern behavior toward the group earns her the nickname “Nurse Ratched” (don’t worry—Ken Kesey created her in 1962, so she’d be a known quantity here). Those interactions with her patients are fine, but her personal life suddenly becomes a plot point, resulting in a ham-fisted tour of Dr. Spencer’s homophobia. I don’t mean to sound dismissive, but it’s shoehorned in here so poorly that it plays like a pander that has nothing to do with the rest of the story. Is her sexuality meant to explain her strict demeanor?
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