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Hofmann's Potion ONF/NFB


Catalogue Number:  NFB524946
Producer:  National Film Board Of Canada
Producers:  Kent Martin, Sally Bochner
Directors:  Connie Littlefield
Producing Agencies:  National Film Board of Canada (Montreal)
Subject:  Abuse, Documentary, Health and Medicine, Medicine, Psychology
Language:  English
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2002
Running Time:  56:35
Closed Captions:  Yes


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Long before Timothy Leary urged a generation to 'tune in, turn on and drop out,' D-lysergic acid diethylamide (or LSD) was being used by researchers to understand the human mind.

Discovered in 1943 by Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann, LSD was hailed as a powerful tool to treat alcoholism and drug addiction and to provide a window into schizophrenia and other mental illnesses. Much of that pioneering research was done by the team of Humphry Osmond, Abram Hoffer and Duncan Blewett, all working in Saskatchewan.

While researchers were establishing the medical benefits of LSD, others--like author Aldous Huxley--promoted the drug as a powerful tool for mental exploration and self-understanding. At Harvard, Timothy Leary, Ralph Metzner and Ram Dass (then known as Richard Alpert) became popular heroes after the university cancelled their research project into psychedelics.

Featuring interviews with many LSD pioneers, Hofmann's Potion is much more than a simple chronicle of the drug's early days. With its thoughtful interviews, beautiful music and stunning cinematography, it is an invitation to look at LSD--and our world--with a more open, compassionate mind.

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