Can you be transported into the heart of a psychedelic adventure with the click of a button and the flash and flicker of a screen? Animation has always had the unique ability to capture the mind and make us feel like we’ve been transported to some strange, far-off place. Or, depending on the film, some can transport us into the ever-shifting inner realms that we can usually only access with a little help from psychedelics. Sometimes, a skilled director or animator can create a trippy movie that makes us feel like we’re hippy-flipping our way through a psychedelic-fueled adventure.
Movies and psychedelics can alter one’s perception of reality. Psychedelics do this chemically by interacting with our brain’s serotonin receptors, leading to altered states of consciousness, visual and auditory hallucinations, and profound shifts in thought and emotion. Conversely, movies alter perception through visual and auditory storytelling, immersing viewers in different worlds, perspectives, and emotional experiences. But most importantly, both movies and psychedelics can tell us stories. In the case of psychedelics, these are often internal narratives that we create whenever the influence of something like LSD, DMT, or psilocybin.
On the other hand, movies allow one to enter into someone else’s narrative. In some cases, these stories are glimpses into the life of a real person or historical figure. However, some of the most interesting external narratives we explore come from animation. Unlike live-action films, animated stories have no limits, and like psychedelics, they can provide us glimpses of worlds, creatures, and experiences that would be nearly impossible to explore through a live-action medium. Making them the perfect medium to capture the “feel” of synergistic psychedelic combinations like “Hippy Flipping” or the much-renowned “Jedi Flip.” Candy and Jedi Flipping are the slang terms for combining certain psychedelics like LSD and MDMA.
(Note: Combining any substance, including psychedelics, is something that should always be approached with caution and after extensive research. While some psychedelics exhibit synergistic effects, combining drugs increases the likelihood of experiencing negative and sometimes dangerous side effects.)
Our List of The Top Five Trippy Movies That Feel Like Being on Psychedelics
Inside Out, produced by Pixar Animation Studios, takes you on a wondrous adventure that may make you feel like you’re Candy Flipping. Candy Flip is a combination of MDMA (aka Ecstasy) and LSD (Lysergic Acid Diethylamide), known for blending the empathetic, euphoric effects of MDMA with the visual and sensory enhancement of LSD. This combination often leads to experiences filled with vibrant colors, heightened emotions, and a profound sense of connection and joy.
Inside Out is a wonderfully imaginative film that explores the emotional journey of a young girl, Riley, through personifications of her emotions — Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust. The film’s vibrant and colorful portrayal of Riley’s inner world, with stunning landscapes representing different aspects of her psyche, echoes the visual enhancement and sensory amplification characteristic of LSD. The movie’s creative and vivid visuals, from the whimsical design of the characters to the intricate details of the mind’s landscapes, align with the kind of visual wonder and enhancement experienced during a Candy Flip.
Simultaneously, Inside Out explores themes of joy, sadness, and the complexities of human emotions in a way that resonates with the empathetic and euphoric nature of MDMA. The film encourages a profound understanding and connection to its characters, mirroring the emotional depth and empathy that MDMA induces.
Combining these elements — the colorful, imaginative world and the deep emotional resonance — makes Inside Out an excellent representation of a Candy Flip experience. It’s a film that entertains with its fun and engaging story and provides a deeper understanding and appreciation of the emotional landscape, much like Candy Flipping’s deeply thoughtful and visually stimulating journey.
Avatar, directed by James Cameron, almost perfectly captures the essence of a Jedi Flip, which is the combination of Psilocybin (magic mushrooms), MDMA (Ecstasy), and LSD (Lysergic Acid Diethylamide). The Jedi Flip is known for its intensely synergistic effect, combining the introspective depth and visual enhancement of Psilocybin and LSD with the emotional openness and empathy of MDMA. This combination creates a profoundly immersive and multi-faceted psychedelic experience, a concept vividly paralleled in Avatar.
Avatar transports viewers to the alien world of Pandora, a stunning and ecologically diverse planet. The film’s groundbreaking effects and vibrant color palette mirror the intense visual hallucinations and sensory enhancements typical of LSD and Psilocybin. The lush landscapes, bioluminescent flora, and intricate details of the Na’vi culture in the film provide a feast of sensory delights that resonates with the psychedelic aspects of a Jedi Flip.
Additionally, the film explores deep emotional and spiritual themes, much like the empathetic and introspective experiences induced by MDMA and Psilocybin. The narrative of Avatar delves into the connection between the Na’vi and their environment and the protagonist’s journey of self-discovery and transformation. This aligns with the emotional depth and empathy brought on by MDMA, as well as the reflective and spiritual aspects of Psilocybin.
Furthermore, Avatar’s exploration of consciousness, identity, and the interconnectedness of life echoes the profound, often life-changing insights that can arise from a Jedi Flip experience. Avatars’ blend of breathtaking visuals, deep emotional narratives, and profound themes make it a fitting cinematic parallel to this unique and powerful psychedelic experience.
For an animated film that aligns with the experience of a Hippy Flip, the combination of Psilocybin (magic mushrooms) and MDMA (Ecstasy), Paprika (2006) by director Satoshi Kon is an exceptional choice. With its adult themes, complex narrative, and stunning visuals, this film mirrors a Hippy Flip’s introspective and empathetic qualities, while also providing a mature and thought-provoking story.
Paprika is a striking and intellectually stimulating anime that delves into the realms of dreams and reality. The film’s use of surreal and often kaleidoscopic imagery closely aligns with the visual enhancements and perceptual shifts characteristic of Psilocybin. The vivid colors, fluid transformations of the dreamscapes, and the blending of the real with the surreal in Paprika reflect the psychedelic visual experience that Psilocybin is known for.
Simultaneously, Paprika explores deep psychological themes and emotional landscapes, resonating with the empathetic and connective aspects of MDMA. The narrative, centered around the invention that allows therapists to enter their patient’s dreams, delves into exploring the human psyche and identity. This exploration mirrors the introspective and empathetic journey facilitated by MDMA, which enhances emotional openness and connectedness.
The film’s blend of adventure, mystery, and psychological thriller elements, combined with its subconscious exploration, perfectly represents the Hippy Flip experience.
For a film that embodies the experience of a Nexus Flip, the combination of 2C-B and MDMA, an excellent choice is Waking Life (2001), directed by Richard Linklater. This combination, known for its unique blend of psychedelic visuals and emotional depth, is well-represented in the innovative and thought-provoking style of Waking Life.
Waking Life uses a distinctive rotoscope animation technique, where live-action footage is traced over to create animated scenes. This style creates a surreal, dream-like quality that is highly reminiscent of the visual distortions and enhancements characteristic of 2C-B. The film’s fluid and often shifting visuals echo the visual creativity and altered perception experienced during a Nexus Flip, where colors and shapes may appear more vivid and morphing.
Moreover, Waking Life delves deep into philosophical and existential discussions, exploring themes like consciousness, dreams, and the nature of reality. This reflective and thought-provoking content aligns with the empathetic and emotionally introspective effects of MDMA. The film invites viewers into deep contemplation, much like the empathetic and connective experience that MDMA induces, often leading to profound personal insights and emotional revelations.
The film’s visually arresting animation and deep, reflective narrative capture the essence of a Nexus Flip. Waking Life provides not just a visual feast that resonates with the psychedelic aspect of 2C-B but also an emotional and philosophical depth that parallels the empathetic qualities of MDMA, making it an ideal cinematic parallel to the Nexus Flip experience.
Our final film, and honorable mention, is another classic animated movie, Ferngully: The Last Rainforest. This animated classic is a deeply complex film that combines environmental themes about overharvesting and the destruction of the rainforest with a vibrant animated world—making it an excellent match for the psychedelic combination of Psilocybin (magic mushrooms) and MDMA (Ecstasy), also known as a Hippy Flip.
FernGully is set in an enchanting rainforest, brimming with vivid colors, mythical creatures, and a deep sense of the magic within nature. This setting aligns perfectly with the Psilocybin experience, which enhances the perception of colors and patterns and fosters a profound connection with the natural world. The film’s depiction of the forest’s beauty and its intricate interplay of life echoes the heightened appreciation for nature that Psilocybin can induce.
On the other hand, MDMA’s influence is reflected in the film’s themes of friendship, collaboration, and emotional depth. MDMA is known for enhancing emotional warmth and empathy, fostering a sense of closeness and understanding between individuals. FernGully explores these themes through its characters’ relationships as they unite to protect their home, mirroring the empathetic and communal spirit evoked by MDMA.
The fusion of these two substances in a Hippy Flip mirrors the experience of Ferngully beautifully. The film’s blend of environmental consciousness, emotional storytelling, and vibrant, immersive visuals creates an experience that is both introspective and joyously communal, akin to the harmonious and insightful journey of a Psilocybin and MDMA combination.
While no movie can ever fully encapsulate the feeling of being on a psychedelic, much less multiple psychedelics, we hope that you enjoy these films as much as we have. Each one can capture the imagination in its own unique and meaningful way. Often, animated movies like these allow us to explore new worlds, meet strange new beings, and, like psychedelics, explore our inner universe.
This material is not intended as a replacement or substitute for any legal or medical advice. Always consult a medical professional about your health needs. Psychedelics are widely illegal in the United States, and readers should always be informed about local, state, and federal regulations regarding psychedelics or other drugs.