Synopsis: Aphrodisiac!: The Sexual Secret Of Marijuana, is a tripped-out, sex-filled documentary “dramatization” about the benefits of using marijuana. Mixed in with the history of harvesting weed, the seedy side of drug trafficking, information on the medical benefits and even a recipe for pot brownies, are titillating sexual scenes sure to make you “high” with excitement. Shot with tongue planted firmly in cheek (and maybe elsewhere, too), this flick even features an early appearance by adult film actor John Holmes as a businessman who gives his secretary a bit of “dick-tation” in his wonderfully wood-paneled office. Heck, even midget Billy Curtis (The Wizard Of Oz, High Plains Drifter) shows up to give his thoughts on pot.
eyelights: the sexy bits. the nudity. the unintentional humour.
eyesores: the propaganda.
‘Aphrodisiac! The Sexual Secret of Marijuana’ is a 1971 documentary feature whose claim is that pot enhances sexual activity. Some people suggest that it was meant to be tongue-in-cheek, but what I saw was a propaganda piece in the same vein as ‘Reefer Madness’ – but taking a completely contrary position (pun intended).
‘Aphrodisiac!’ espouses the virtues of marijuana. It truly does its best to convince audiences that pot is a miracle drug and then uses sex to seal the deal, showing people making out, feeling each other up, groping each other, …etc. And that’s just the intro – which lasts a full 13 minutes before the opening credits run.
The filmmakers make various claims as to the factuality of their film – and, as can be expected, barely support their assertions. They try to use statistics at one point, such as the hilariously vague 7% to 85% of soldiers (in Vietnam?) smoke when not on duty. Haha… I wonder how much research and polling went into that.
Furthermore, they make poor use of their stats in their argument about the promiscuity of pot users. To convince people that pot actually works, they boldly state that there are fewer pot smokers who are virgins – completely failing to consider that lifestyle and attitude is likely playing a bigger part than pot.
Then they advise us that pot is a better sexual stimulant than alcohol because alcohol is a depressant and has been known to affect a man’s sexual response. Duh. They might as well claim that wearing lead shorts is better than alcohol for the same reason. Or eating lycra for that matter. Or living in the Northern Hemisphere.
At least they have interviews and testimonials to bolster their claims, with many of those people gushing about how great sex was on pot: it was the best sex ever. Except that it’s soon clear that these testimonials are all staged… when they start re-enacting the circumstances under which they discovered the “miracle” of pot.
‘Aphrodisiac!’ was inadvertently hilarious because of the performances during these re-enactment inserts. There was this one girl who told the story of meeting some guy: “We were protesting in front of the school and we couldn’t help and see each other”. HAHAHA! No wonder: they were the only two people there!!!
Then there was this amusing segment that showed a naked sensitivity group: it was completely unclear what their aim was, nor how pot played a part in it! And the sequence lasted forever! Thankfully, there were a few really cute girls – and no one seemed ashamed of their bodies there (although one guy was a bit timid).
Honestly, I did not expect this, but this so-called documentary is actually really explicit: it shows blowjobs, cunnilingus, penetration, and all sorts of positions… with no censorship at all. I mean, I had expected the film to be exploitative, just based on the title, but I never expected it to be pornographic!
Not that I mind, of course…
There is a moment in the first third where the filmmakers attempts to give a historical account of the legal history of pot through the years, but I was skeptical from the onset. After seeing just how farcical most of its content is, I couldn’t even begin to take any of it seriously. Even if some of it is.
Honestly, the film is mere propaganda, no matter what anyone else says: there’s little dissent in the whole thing. It even goes so far as to show audiences how to rolls joints, prepare their pot, and it tries to sell the value of pot merchandising by telling them that it can be resold to other users for profit.
Snicker, snicker… I can only imagine the kinds of people who financed this film!
As one might expect from something so lurid, ‘Aphrodisiac!’ was edited by monkeys. Or editors on pot. It’s not as bad as that, but it’s not professionally done. They likely assumed that their audience would be too stoned to know the difference. They also bolstered it with a super dramatic classical score. Jarring, weird.
Truth be told, if I were remotely impressionable, if I didn’t have any critical thinking skills, ‘Aphrodisiac! the Sexual Secret of Marijuana’ might actually convince me. It really does a good job of making pot appear innocuous, so I would no doubt want to find out how beneficial it could be to my sex life.
But I’m not so gullible. The filmmakers like to claim that smoking (or eating) pot would help anyone with their sexual hangups. Personally, I propose that people should simply watch this ‘Aphrodisiac!’ instead. Suffused with sex as it is, who the heck needs anything else to get turned on?
I certainly don’t. Plus which it’s a good laugh.
Nota bene: There’s very little trustworthy documentation on it out there, but it seems that it was released on home video in a severely truncated 45-minute version, with all of the naughty bits edited out. It has recently been released on DVD unedited, in its full 77-minute form. I don’t know where they dug it from, but this print had lots of print damage, pops in the audio. Not that it matters. of course… but you’ve been forewarned.
Date of viewing: January 18, 2014