Pot Country is a beautifully-shot doc about the marijuana farmers of Northern California. Arriving in the Sixties in blue collar towns so beautiful they barely seemed real, a generation of young people learned to live off the land, creating a new home for themselves.

To them, pot was a gift: the perfect growing conditions allowed them to reap a harvest and sustain themselves. Friends would travel up from San Francisco and, passing around a joint, ask “Where did you get this?” The farmers would point to their gardens.

Now, of course, times are changing. Life has always been a bit rough in the Redwoods, and the economic climate has made things even more difficult. More and more famers are moving to the area, hoping to cash in on the pot crops, and over-saturating the market. Beyond that, an impending potential legalization bill has farmers worried that corporate growers will invade Humboldt County and squeeze out the Mom-and-Pot operations. 

The film, using interviews with engaging and memorable characters, tells a smoky small-town story set to stunning scenery, looking at the implications of marijuana growth on both a local and national level. The film shatters misconceptions, and you will fall in love with the kind grey-haired farmers who wear reading glasses to trim their buds, and love their adopted home fiercely.

Thurs, May 3rd, 9 pm, TIFF Bell Lightbox 3. Rush Only. 

Fri, May 4th, 3:45 pm, Cumberland 2. Buy tickets. http://purchase.tickets.com/buy/TicketPurchase?pid=7234353

~ Haley Cullingham