Amid the seismic cultural shift of the 1970s, American comedy got a
sharper edge when a newly minted magazine named National Lampoon stuck
its middle finger up at the establishment. Spawned at an Ivy League
school, National Lampoon rose from a counterculture rag to a revered
comic institution. Bound by a passion for the absurd and a mistrust of
authority, Lampoon’s irreverence spanked nearly every available social
taboo from weak-kneed politics to heated racial tensions. This unique
cocktail of high satire and gallows humor exploded onto America’s
cultural consciousness attracting visionary talents such as Gilda
Radner, John Belushi, Bill Murray, and Chevy Chase, whose comedic force
helped expand the magazine’s spirit to stage and film.
Director Douglas Tirola unearths never-before-seen archival footage and brilliantly weaves it together with the magazine’s beautiful and often shocking art, reliving National Lampoon’s meteoric rise from go-to magazine of the counterculture to a brand synonymous with Hollywood’s biggest comedies. Energetic, revolutionary, gently perverted, and often hilarious, DRUNK STONED BRILLIANT DEAD elevates nostalgia to a roof-raising experience.