• Canada
Audio Tracks 

It is about the people who discovered and spread the use of marijuana as a recreational drug, the sailors, jazzmen, entertainers, blacks and Mexicans, poets and beatniks, as well as their antagonists in the Bureau of Narcotics, headed by Harry Anslinger, (author of Marijuana: Assasin of Youth), who sought to drive grass underground.

Edited out of 500 hours of archival footage on the history of marijuana in North America, the film focusses on a long lasting and fierce prohibition that has seen the number of North American pot smokers rise from 60,000 (at the time it was outlawed) to 30 million.

GRASS is an informative and entertaining kaleidoscope of the longest-running and most disobeyed prohibition in the history of the USA, an epic tale of how Government bureaucrats created a climate which turned literrally millions of users, at least technically, into criminals.

As Mann says, the US Government managed to achieve exactly the opposite in the case of marijuana. In spite of contunuous and ferocious repression it went from being a recreation activity of Hispanic and African minorities to being a widespread, middle class activity. It’s incredible that people don’t know the history of GRASS in North America, how it was used as a scapegoat to target minorities, how factual data about it was again and again covered up in favor of the hysteria, and how it has been lumped with harder drugs.

This film is not currently online :(

But no worries. There are more just like it in our new programme.


  • Original title
  • Direction
  • DOP
    Robert Fresco
  • Editing
    Sue Len Quon
  • Sound
    Mike Rosnick,Tom Trafalski
  • Duration
    78 min (46-90 min.)
  • Year
  • Country
    • Canada
  • Production
      • Sphinx Productions
  • Festivals
    • 1999 Toronto Film Festival, Canada
    • 2000 Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema, Argentina
    • 2000 Karlovy Vary Film Festival, Czech Republic
    • 2000 Bergen International Film Festival, Norway
    • 2000 Stockholm International Film Festival, Sweden
    • 2001 Genie Awards, Canada
    • Won Genie Award for Best Documentary is powered by Doc Alliance, a creative partnership of 7 key European documentary film festivals. Our aim is to advance the documentary genre, support its diversity and promote quality creative documentary films.

Doc Alliance Members

Join to get regular updates on our film program:

By sending the registration for the Newsletter, I consent to receiving commercial communications through electronic means and to related personal data processing required for the purposes of sending the Newsletter of Doc-Air Distribution s.r.o. I confirm having read the Principles of Personal Data Processing, understanding the text and consenting to the same, while I acknowledge the rights specified herein, including, without limitation, the right to submit objections against direct marketing techniques.

Poslat svému Junioru