Lil Duval is famous for his edgy tweets—and for receiving a lot of backlash for them. Whether you’re a fan of his humor or not, brace yourself, because Grow House is his house, and inside, he expands on his signature style, big time.

Written and directed by DJ Pooh (who also co-wrote the hood classic film, Friday), Grow House is about two friends, Darius (Duval) and Pat (DeRay Davis), who realize that they need to make more money, and decide to do it by selling weed. What follows is a step-by-step, fail-after-fail slapstick comedy about making their gaup idea come to life.

Lil Duval, DeRay Davis, Racquel Lee in Grow House
Lil Duval, DeRay Davis, Racquel Lee in Grow House

DJ Pooh’s script is determined. The effort is obvious (at times, maybe too obvious) as the story progresses through each scene, and it really picks up midway when a funny twist is revealed from one of the characters (the beautiful Racquel Lee, who steals every scene she steps foot in). But for some reason, I wanted more from these figures. They were all larger-than-life comedians, and I think the film would’ve benefited from a bit of authentic heart. It wasn’t like the actors weren’t competent (say what you want, but this movie made me a believer in Duval as an actor).

For the most part, Grow House is what you expect it to be. But what makes it different from a long line of other movies that celebrate weed smoking, is its focus on entrepreneurship and business. For me, that is where the charm of the film lies. Scene after scene explicitly depicts the ups and downs and unexpectedness of business brilliantly (Davis’ character, Pat, literally follows a guide throughout the movie), and seeing that journey is incentive for sitting through the entire film.

Grow House isn’t winning any Oscars next awards season, but I doubt the creators give a damn. That isn’t the intent here. It’s a fun movie to see if you have some free time, extra cash, vodka to sneak in the theater with you, and of course, a bit of weed…which I’m certain is THE intended way to view it.

Grow House (2017)
Director DJ Pooh
Writer DJ Pooh
Stars Lil Duval, DeRay Davis, Snoop Dogg, Faizon Love, Zulay Henao, Racquel Lee,
Rating R