Hua Hsu praises Harold & Kumar's contributions to the stoner movie canon:
One effect of Harold & Kumar was that it was suddenly OK for Asian-Americans to be as stupid, irresponsible, or chinky-eyed as everyone else. … There are two versions of the vaunted "post-racial" dream. The first, which will remain unachievable, imagines a future when we as a society have figured out a fair, just, and universally respectful way to deal with difference, if the very idea still holds at all. In the second version, we are all at the same party, cresting on the same contact high, icing each other ad infinitum. In this way, Harold and Kumar were visionary figures, possessing a new chalice of American identity, one that deemphasized the importance of race.