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Druglawed is a 2015 documentary film directed by Arik Reiss concerning cannabis in New Zealand, the ongoing struggle for cannabis law reform in that country and how the United States led War on Drugs has impacted small nations like New Zealand. The film had its 'underworld' premiere on January 24, 2015 in Auckland, New Zealand and its 'grand world premiere' is planned for April 2015 in Dunedin. The film features drug policy experts including Professor David Nutt and Ethan Nadelmann as well as New Zealand politicians John Key, Nandor Tanczos and Metiria Turei.

Film content

The film looks at the history of how 184 countries signed up to fight Richard Nixon's War On Drugs. It shows how New Zealand adopted these drug policies and for decades has maintained some of the highest arrest rates for cannabis in the world. It examines how currently some US states have decided to abandon prohibition of marijuana, but New Zealand continues to enforce it. It relays the statistic that someone is arrested in New Zealand for cannabis every thirty minutes and the fact that no one has ever died from using it. Through interviews with cannabis users and growers, police officers, economists, doctors, politicians and scientists, it examines the cause and effect nature of the underground cannabis business. It also looks at how other jurisdictions have pulled this black market out of the darkness through legalisation.

DVD release

The DVD of Druglawed was sold in limited release from February 2015. It was sold for the first time at the 'underworld premiere' in Auckland. It will be released widely in April 2015.


A small portion of the budget for Druglawed was raised using the PledgeMe and Kickstarter crowdfunding platforms.