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Reefer Madness (1936)
"Tell Your Children" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  1938 (USA)
3.7
Your rating:
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Ratings: 3.7/10 from 5,574 users  
Reviews: 100 user | 66 critic

Cautionary tale features a fictionalized and highly exaggerated take on the use of marijuana. A trio of drug dealers lead innocent teenagers to become addicted to "reefer" cigarettes by holding wild parties with jazz music.

Director:

(as Louis Gasnier)

Writers:

(original story), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Reefer Madness (1936)

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A town is shocked when a high school girl commits suicide. A reporter and a cop team up to investigate and find out exactly what is going on among the youth of the town.

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Stars: Bob Buchholz, Michael Cheselka, Connie Sue Cook
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Dorothy Short ...
...
Lillian Miles ...
Dave O'Brien ...
Thelma White ...
Mae
Carleton Young ...
Jack
Warren McCollum ...
Jimmy (as Warren McCullom)
Patricia Royale ...
Agnes (as Pat Royale)
Joseph Forte ...
Dr. Carroll (as Josef Forte)
Harry Harvey Jr. ...
Junior
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Storyline

Propaganda film that relates the story, as told by high school principal Dr. Carroll to parents at a PTA meeting, of the scourge of marijuana. The tale revolves around Mae and Jack, accomplices in the distribution of marijuana, who manage to entice the local high school kids to stop by Mae's apartment to smoke reefer. The lives of all who are involved with this menace are inevitably shattered. One man becomes so addicted to the killer weed that the guilt over framing a teen for murder causes a judge to order him to be committed for life to a mental hospital! Dr. Carroll closes by advising us to not incur the same tragedy. Written by Rick Gregory <rag.apa@email.apa.org>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Women Cry For It - Men Die For It! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dope Addict  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Stars Dorothy Short (Mary) and Dave O'Brien (Ralph) were married the year this film was released (1936). See more »

Goofs

When Jimmy falls into the Lane's fountain his trousers are soaked. However, when he walks into his house a few minutes later his trousers are completely dry. See more »

Quotes

Bill: Ya know after that session we had yesterday, I went home and told mother that the trouble with her pot roast gravy was that she hadn't added three heaping teaspoonfuls of olive oil.
[Laughs]
Mary: What did she say?
Bill: She didn't say anything; she just threw me out of the kitchen.
Mary: Why, no wonder.
See more »

Crazy Credits

FOREWORD: The motion picture you are about to witness may startle you. It would not have been possible, otherwise, to sufficiently emphasize the frightful toll of the new drug menace which is destroying the youth of America in alarmingly-increasing numbers. Marihuana is that drug - a violent narcotic - an unspeakable scourge - The Real Public Enemy Number One! Its first effect is sudden, violent, uncontrollable laughter; then come dangerous hallucinations - space expands - time slows down, almost stands still ....fixed ideas come next, conjuring up monstrous extravagances - followed by emotional disturbances, the total inability to direct thoughts, the loss of all power to resist physical emotions... leading finally to acts of shocking violence... ending often in incurable insanity. In picturing its soul-destroying effects no attempt was made to equivocate. The scenes and incidents, while fictionized for the purposes of this story, are based upon actual research into the results of Marihuana addiction. If their stark reality will make you think, will make you aware that something must be done to wipe out this ghastly menace, then the picture will not have failed in its purpose.... Because the dread Marihuana may be reaching forth next for your son or daughter....or yours....or YOURS! See more »

Connections

Referenced in Caffeine Madness (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

Stoned
19 April 2004 | by (Virginia Beach) – See all my reviews

I make a hobby out of finding films whose underlying philosophy contradicts the philosophy, moral or point of the story. This is a great example.

The evil here is of course THCannibis. Regardless of whether you think confusing neurons is a good idea, you mind find it interesting to notice the narrative structure of this film. Now remember this is well before 'Citizen Kane' reinvented the narrative in film and slightly before 'Sullivan's Travels' started the trend.

The story is a story within a story within a dream within a vision, with multiple side stories dreams and visions along the way. Try to diagram this to see where you really are and you'll be shocked at how close it comes to the pathology of being stoned.

Ted's Evaluation -- 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.


9 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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