You may nearly odor the joints littering the display as “The Marijuana Conspiracy” shuffles aimlessly ahead. Set in Canada in 1972, and dramatizing an precise experiment designed to check the results of hashish on younger girls, this agonizingly gauche film looks like a missed alternative for a searing moral investigation.
Fearing that Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau is about to decriminalize weed, a disapproving politician (Derek McGrath) — hoping to show that the drug evokes laziness and common ethical turpitude — hires a laid-back sociologist (Gregory Calderone) to run the examine. For 98 days, feminine volunteers might be confined and ruthlessly monitored whereas inhaling hefty doses of government-sanctioned grass. When not toking, they are going to be paid to weave macramé belts and wall hangings.
Smart viewers is not going to expect an motion film, however “The Marijuana Conspiracy” is worse than inert: It’s shallow and tone-deaf. Makes an attempt to spotlight the sexism and discrimination of the time are both embarrassingly awkward or troublingly facile. Specializing in 5 prepared stoners, every with one persona trait and a particular monetary aim apiece — wistful and homeless, perky and commune-bound — the author and director, Craig Pryce, feeds them dialogue creaking with vintage lingo and sticky sentiment. Sitcom-style music bridges bonding periods and confessionals, the workmanlike cinematography underscoring the small-screen vibe.
The film’s function, nonetheless, stays foggy. The phrase “conspiracy” is within the title — and the movie’s coda signifies that among the examine’s real-life contributors suffered long-term results — but Pryce appears incapable of shaping the battle and ethical outrage his story wants. However then, that will imply killing the thrill.
The Marijuana Conspiracy
Not rated. Working time: 2 hours 4 minutes. Lease or purchase on Google Play, Vudu and different streaming platforms and pay TV operators.