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Movies to Watch on Shrooms: Our Favorite Psychedelic Cinema

From awe-inspiring nature docs to trippy animations, here are the best movies to watch on shrooms.

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Updated June 2, 2021

DoubleBlind Mag is devoted to fair, rigorous reporting by leading experts and journalists in the field of psychedelics. Read more about our editorial process and fact-checking here. Editorially reviewed by Madison Margolin.

Watching movies on shrooms can make for an interesting trip. While tripping, many films have the power to captivate, dazzle, and inspire. Yet, they can also have a strong influence on the overall mood of the trip itself. Some movies might be a little over the top for tripping—like the Shrooms movie horror film, for example. Others, however, may provide just the right combination of visual and audio stimulation for a meaningful experience. A word of advice? Make selections based on the set and setting you feel that you’d most enjoy. 

Best Movies to Watch on Shrooms

It’s surprising—there aren’t many films that focus expressly on psilocybin mushrooms and the unique experiences that they inspire. Fortunately, the third wave of the psychedelic renaissance has inspired a renewed interest in psychedelic documentaries and films. Here are a few movies about mushrooms and psychedelics worth watching: 

Fantastic Fungi  

If you’re fascinated by mushrooms and want to learn more about the pervasive and even mystical role that fungi play in nature, this documentary is for you. Fantastic Fungi is a beautiful film directed by Louie Schwartzberg and narrated by Brie Larson. Mushroom experts like Paul Stamets make guest appearances, along with authors like Michael Pollan and Eugenia Bone. It’s a film that will shift your perspective on the natural world around you. 

Magic Medicine (2018)

Magic Medicine movie poster

Magic Medicine is a documentary that follows the first-ever clinical trial on psilocybin therapy for patients struggling with depression in the United Kingdom. Inspiration for the trial started with one simple question: “What would happen if we gave psilocybin to people suffering from severe depression?” It’s touching, intimate, and explores difficult topics like trauma and mental health with great empathy. Could the results of this study change the course of depression treatment in the future? Watch and see. Directed by Monty Wates. 

Read: How To Take Shrooms

Have A Good Trip (2020) 

Netflix’s Have A Good Trip is not about mushrooms per se but rather about the broader experience of psychedelics and culture. Listen to anecdotes from celebrities like Sting, A$AP Rocky, and Sarah Silverman as they reminisce about their experiences with psychedelics and the meaning that they’ve brought into their lives. Finally, learn general facts about psychedelics through dazzling illustrations. 

Trippy TV, Psychedelic Movies: What to Watch on Shrooms

When it comes to watching movies on shrooms, we have one word of advice—to each their own. By now, it’s common knowledge that set and setting are two of the most important aspects of a good shrooms trip. So, the movie you pick to watch can have a strong influence on the trip. Watching horror? Maybe not the best idea. Psychological thrillers or movies with intense plotlines may also be tricky.

While tripping, it can also be difficult to pay attention to a film fully. Your focus may bob in and out. It may be uncomfortable to sit too long. Reading subtitles may be challenging. So, it may not be the time to watch a movie that you’ve waited a long time to see—especially if you’re new to the psilocybin experience and don’t quite know where your mind will take you.  

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Animated Movies to Watch on Mushrooms

Animated films are perhaps some of the best movies to watch on shrooms. Why? They’re visually pleasing and often entrancing. Animated movies like Fantasia are often trip-favorites because of both the visuals and the music. Plotlines and movie concepts can become less important, and viewers can simply sit back and enjoy the ride.  

Fantasia (1940) & Fantasia 2000 (1999) 

Fantasia and Fantasia 2000 are among the most-recommended movies to watch while tripping on shrooms. The graphics and classical music are mesmerizing, taking you on a “journey through the imagination” through eight animated segments. Celebrities like Steve Martin and Quincy Jones introduce segments in Fantasia 2000, which is the commemorative and anthological remake of the 1940 classic. 

Yellow Submarine (1968)

Yellow Submarine is another psychonaut fan-favorite. The Beatles music coupled with bright and colorful retro-style graphics makes for a comforting and jolly watching experience. And the plotline is quite silly—the group accompanies Captain Fred on a journey to Pepperland in his yellow submarine on a mission to free it from the grumpy and music-hating Blue Beanies. 

Loving Vincent (2017)

The verbal content of Loving Vincent may get a little heavy for a mushroom trip; it confronts death, mental illness, and suicide. But, here’s what’s beautiful about it: this film is made entirely with paintings. So, whether you decide to watch it with the audio or not, Loving Vincent is still amazing to look at silent. It’s easy enough to put on some soothing music and simply watch and observe the visual treats instead—an interesting choice if you don’t plan on sitting down or watching an entire movie. (Of course, it’s a stunning film, so it’s certainly worth watching to completion as well.)

Nature & Documentary Movies To Watch on Mushrooms

Night on Earth (2020)

Many people who use psychedelics feel a strong connection with nature either during or after the experience—or both! So, what better to put on while tripping than a nature documentary with stunning sounds and footage?  Here are a few top picks:

Netflix’s Night on Earth is a technological feat. The documentary series uses innovative camera technology to lift the cover of darkness and reveals the private world of nighttime wildlife in full color—a beautiful thing to see while tripping. However, be warned about scenes of hunting animals. For some people, these types of scenes may be a little jarring while tripping, and particularly while under the influence of magic mushrooms. 

Planet Earth (2006) 

Planet Earth is a classic from BBC. David Attenborough’s soothing voice walks you through different biomes, highlighting both the beauty and the drama of the earth’s wild spaces. It’s one of the first major nature documentaries to be shot in high-definition 4k video. So, the footage is still breathtaking, even a decade after the series first aired.

One Strange Rock  (2018)

The power of Space and Nature combine in One Strange Rock, narrated by Will Smith. This National Geographic series explores life on earth from the perspective of real astronauts, who have spent years looking back on our planet from space. Enjoy scenic shots of nature on earth, as well as actual footage from space.  

Cosmos (1980, 2014) 

Cosmos has been a stoner favorite for decades, and understandably so—not only do galactic shots inspire amazement and wonder, but both Carl Sagen and Neil DeGrasse Tyson are well-known proponents of cannabis reform. While tripping, this timeless classic may still be one of the best and most benign shows to play.  

Science Fiction Movies To Watch While on Mushrooms

Awe-inspiring graphics is a common theme amongst the best movies for tripping. If out-of-this-world graphics are your jam, what could be better than a space opera? Here are some picks worth considering: 

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

2001 Space Odyssey is ranked a fan-favorite movie to watch on shrooms—indeed, it’s regarded as one of the most influential films ever made. Follow the plight of Dr. Heywood Floyd, Chairman of the United States National Council of Astronautics, as he travels to investigate a four-million-year-old artifact that’s been buried near a lunar crater. (And enjoy the realistic depictions of space travel and philosophical musings on existence while you’re at it.) Although it’s important to keep in mind that while this piece is considered a masterpiece of its time, it may not live up to the diversity and inclusion standards that we collectively hold today. 

Interstellar

Interstellar is another fan-favorite amongst movie-watching psychonauts. It portrays earth devastated by the impacts of climate change and a team of astronauts’ efforts during their last effort to save the human race. Interstellar touches on themes of loneliness, love, and the meaning of existence alongside a high-budget portrayal of the wonders of space and physics. 

Arrival 

Arrival is a far more subtle film than 2001 and Interstellar. Amy Adams plays a linguistics professor who has accepted the job of a lifetime—decoding an alien language that’s unlike anything ever heard on earth. While dark at times and potentially a little intimidating for a shroom trip, this film’s underlying philosophy is one of immeasurable empathy and peace. 

It’s surprising—there aren’t many films that focus expressly on psilocybin mushrooms and the unique experiences that they inspire. Fortunately, the third wave of the psychedelic renaissance has inspired a renewed interest in psychedelic documentaries and films.

Live-Action: Best Movies to Watch on Shrooms

Get ready to get weird. Not everyone takes psilocybin mushrooms to embark on a spirit quest or find personal meaning. For many, psychedelic mushrooms are recreational—they’re exciting and fun. (Well, not to overlook the sometimes traumatic nature of bad trips.) Many people who choose to watch live-action films while tripping may appreciate the shock value and overall weirdness that movies like Labyrinth and Willy Wonka can inspire. Others may appreciate the striking visual qualities in movies like Samsara. Here are some popular fan favorites:

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)

This film is a classic amongst many recreational consumers. Based on the 1971 novel by Hunter S. Thompson, this film follows journalist Raoul Duke and Dr. Gonzo on a drug-fueled road trip to Las Vegas—and they really do it up. Ether and “sunshine acid” are just two of the mind-altering substances they enjoy on their twisted and sweaty weekend bender.

Samsara (2011)

Samsara movie poster

Ron Fricke’s Samsara is one of the highest-rated films to watch while tripping. This film explores the concept of eternity and the sacred through an hour and forty-two minutes of footage, shot over five years in 25 different countries, all on seventy-millimeter film. Although, some advance warning is helpful with this stunning film. While the movie captures stunning images of human life, several scenes depict animal cruelty and sexual commodification, images that are difficult to view in sober life and that may be potentially horrifying while in the emotionally vulnerable state that shrooms can bring about.  

Alice in Wonderland & Alice Through the Looking Glass (2010, 2016)

It probably comes as no surprise that film adaptations of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland make the list of best movies to watch on shrooms—the story itself is seemingly an homage to the psychedelic experience. Follow Alice down the rabbit hole, where she meets a perplexing barrage of jesting animals and eats lots of very strange things. 

Read: How to Make Shroom Tea  

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (as well as its remakes) are weird and trippy in their own right; no psychedelics needed. The film is an adaptation of Roald Dahl’s 1964 novel, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Follow young Charlie on a whimsical and oft uncomfortable tour of a surrealist chocolate factory—and bask in all of the weirdness that happens along the way. 

Labyrinth (1986) 

Labyrinth with David Bowie movie poster

Labyrinth with David Bowie is also trippy in its own right. Follow sixteen-year-old Sarah, played by Jennifer Connelly, on a journey into a labyrinth to save her baby brother, who is in David Bowie’s clutches. Puppets come to the rescue. 

The Movie You Should Never Watch on Shrooms: Shrooms Movie Review 

Shrooms Movie Poster

If there’s one movie to never watch on shrooms, it’s Paddy Breathnach’s 2007 horror movie, Shrooms. Despite the title, it’s not a strong statement to say that this film is, in fact, the antithesis of a genuine shrooms experience—it’s bloody, it’s gory, and does little to portray an accurate picture of tripping. 

Breathnach is quick to admit that his movie is not really about magic mushrooms at all. “What I was interested in was not so much the shrooms per se or depicting the psychedelic experience of shrooms,” Breathnach told Independent.ie prior to the movie’s official release in Ireland. “It was the idea of taking something that makes you vulnerable. That makes you uncertain as to whether your experiences are real or not. And then finding yourself in a situation that’s very threatening—I felt that was an interesting thing.”

Amazon describes this movie as a “tripped-out tale of sex, drugs, and slashers,” a write-up that couldn’t be more apt. Shrooms can be described as Blair Witch Project-esque, although perhaps with more gore and teen drama. The movie stars Lindsey Haun, Jack Huston, and Max Kasch. Rotten Tomatoes rates this film 22%. IMDB rates this movie a 4.2 out of 10. Despite these low ratings, the film still was nominated for a few awards in its time, including taking 5th place for Best Irish Film in the Dublin Film Critics Circle Awards. It was also nominated for Best Film by the Irish Film and Television Awards.

Shrooms Movie Plot (with Spoilers) 

A group of American friends travels to Ireland to eat magic mushrooms on an overnight camping trip, an idea suggested by their Irish friend, Jake. But, as you might expect from a horror film, the fun night in the woods quickly goes awry. The woods are haunted by the Black Knights’ grotesque legacy, sadistic keepers of an abandoned school for outcast children. But, ghost stories are not the only thing amiss in this spooky Irish forest. Death’s head mushrooms are in bloom, a rare and fictional species difficult to distinguish from the not-so-fictional liberty cap. 

The movie begins to ramp up when the main character, Tara, eats a death’s head mushroom, despite warnings from Jake. Tara immediately falls into a seizure. The near-death experience triggers a gothic dream-like state that makes her believe that she can predict future events of the camping trip, including her friends’ deaths. She becomes unable to separate her dream experience from reality and believes that she and her friends are being haunted—and murdered—by the Black Knights of the children’s school. 

Shrooms Movie Ending 

Breathnach’s Shrooms movie ends with a twist: the Black Nights are not the villains of this horror film. Instead, the title belongs to Tara. By the end of the film, Tara is the sole survivor. Fortunately for her, she’s rescued by paramedics. But, the rescue doesn’t go as planned. Tara’s bombarded with realizations while lying in the back of an ambulance; there were no Black Knights after all. 

Instead, she transformed into a homicidal maniac and brutally murdered all of her friends in her delusional state. (Yes, in this shrooms movie, a girl eats shrooms and kills everyone.) But, it certainly doesn’t seem like she feels much remorse. Upon realizing that she, herself, is the killer, her sights turn toward an innocent paramedic. In the final and suggestive ending shot of the film, we see Tara with a pair of bloody scissors and a deranged smile. 

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Shrooms Movie Budget 

The Shrooms movie had a reasonably average budget for a horror film, around €3.5 million (USD 4.2 million). Horror films, unlike other feature-length films, are often produced on a shoestring budget. In contrast, standard feature-length movies cost an average of $70 to 90 million, with many Hollywood blockbusters costing upwards of $200 million. Fun fact: the most expensive film ever made was Avatar, with production costs of nearly $479 million.

Worldwide, Shrooms grossed $4,998,560.

If you or a loved one is struggling with substance use, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-4357 for support. If you’re looking for peer support during or after a psychedelic experience, contact Fireside Project by calling or texting 6-2FIRESIDE.
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