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Marijuana Documentary: The Power of Communication

There are many ways in which communication can break boundaries, change the way in which things are perceived and represented, even move mountains when needed. This is what the documentary Illegal is doing, a wonderful piece of art that has recently turned Brazil upside down, a movie able to generate a national weave and a very productive debate.

The documentary narrates the story of a 5 year old child who suffers from a rare form of epilepsy. Marijuana can help her but the Brazilian law stands between the parents, the kid and the cure. Despite all this, a group of mothers decides to challenge both the state and the prejudice of the many people who ignores the health benefits of cannabis. The impact of the documentary has been huge, and it isn’t at all a coincidence that soon after the movie was released the Brazilian government decided to legalize the use of marijuana in case of epilepsy.

Araújo, one of the filmmakers, said that the documentary is based on a true story but thanks to the many courageous mothers who have collaborated with him the movie is very emotional, and not at all boring. At the moment, 90% of the Brazilians remain against the legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes, but the team that worked on Illegal is fighting also on this front. In fact, also thanks to the documentary, now 50% of the Brazilians believe medical marijuana should be legal. A breach has been opened. This is the power of communication, the power of the right images shown at the right time, the power of the right words spoken by people who are emotionally involved and knowledgeable enough to make others understand a simple fact: marijuana has the power to cure way more than epilepsy, if we are courageous enough to move beyond stereotypes and labels.

The documentary has just been released in Uruguay, a country way ahead of the curve when it comes to cannabis issues, but also a place where medical marijuana is still treated with skepticism and, sometimes, fear. Soon we will know the reactions of the people who live there. We are very curious about it.

In places where marijuana is legal, people are able to buy seeds ( and enjoy the benefits of the plant, academics have the money they need to research and better understand the health benefits of cannabis, and businessmen experience the economic benefits of the cannabis market. Hopefully, a documentary will soon tell the story of a new world, a place where everyone can enjoy some pot and all its benefits!