Dir: Martin Witz
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Web: The Substance
The substance in question is LSD, which forms the basis for this absorbing documentary that explores the drug that transformed the users’ sense of space and time and ‘opened the door of perception’- the phrase from which the band The Doors drew their name.
Examining LSD’s psychological, historical and cultural effects, psychologists, scientists and users - of all types - offer insights, experiences and various interpretations of LSD and the psychedelic experience. With some astonishing archive footage (much of it never previously viewed) and revealing interviews with the likes of Ralph Metzner, Carolyn Garcia and Hofmann himself, this film offers the commentary and biographical study that LSD has always merited.
Taking in everything from Hofmann’s first experience in 1943, through to Millbrook, the military, medicine, psychology and of course the counter culture, The Substance is a fascinating documentary and serious analysis not just about LSD but implicitly the later half of the twentieth century.