a/k/a Tommy Chong

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Released 2008

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Movie Summary

Director:
Josh Gilbert
Released:
2008
Rating:
Not Available
a/k/a Tommy Chong is a full length documentary chronicling the 2003 arrest of and subsequent prison time served by comedian Tommy Chong for selling bongs over the internet. Tommy Chong is a legendary comedian widely known for his drug themed Cheech and Chong routines with fellow comedian and actor Cheech Marin. In the early 2000's in an operation known as "Pipe Dreams," federal prosecutor Mary Beth Buchanan targeted an web based business owned by movie star for selling water pipes, or bongs, in the mail, via a website he owned. Under the veil of the Bush administration's war on terror, he was convicted and sentenced to nine months in federal prison; he was the only convicted defendant without a previous prison record. Chong's friend Josh Gilbert directs this thought provoking film that questions the drug laws and culture behind the persecution of drug related criminals in the United States. Winner of various awards, a/k/a Tommy Chong is informative, striking, and well worth a look.moreless

Metacritic Score

  • 75

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    Chong does his time (nine months) and has the last laugh, emerging as a born-again activist-survivor of the culture wars.

  • 70

    The New York Times Manohla Dargis

    Tells the depressing, often ridiculous and generally enraging story of how and why Mr. Chong, an extremely laid-back and genial camera presence, ended up doing time in the minimum-...

  • 50

    Variety Robert Koehler

    While the picture's reporting on government repression of alternative cultural ideas and lifestyles is noteworthy more than anything, it's a blatant promo for Chong's career.

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