IMDb > Reefer Madness (1936)
Tell Your Children
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Reefer Madness (1936) More at IMDbPro »Tell Your Children (original title)

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Reefer Madness -- 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.
Reefer Madness -- Something must be done to wipe out this ghastly menace.

Overview

User Rating:
3.7/10   5,409 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Lawrence Meade (original story)
Arthur Hoerl (screenplay)
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Contact:
View company contact information for Reefer Madness on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1938 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
SEE youthful marijuana victims - what actually happens! See more »
Plot:
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. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
The Gone with the Wind of 30's Exploitation Films See more (99 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Dorothy Short ... Mary

Kenneth Craig ... Bill
Lillian Miles ... Blanche
Dave O'Brien ... Ralph
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
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Richard Alexander ... Pete Daley - Dope Pusher (uncredited)
Bob Burns ... Juror (uncredited)
Lester Dorr ... Joe - Bartender (uncredited)
Phil Dunham ... Juror (uncredited)
Edward Earle ... Mr. Wayne - Federal Bureau Investigator (uncredited)
Frank LaRue ... Bill's Lawyer (uncredited)
Edward LeSaint ... Judge (uncredited)
Mary MacLaren ... Mrs. Lane (uncredited)
Walter McGrail ... The Boss (uncredited)
Edmund Mortimer ... Henry Harper (uncredited)
Frank O'Connor ... Jury Foreman (uncredited)
William Royle ... Prosecuting Attorney (uncredited)
Marin Sais ... Mrs. Harper (uncredited)
Forrest Taylor ... Blanche's Lawyer (uncredited)
Dan Wolheim ... Pete Daley (uncredited)
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Directed by
Louis J. Gasnier  (as Louis Gasnier)
 
Writing credits
Lawrence Meade (original story)

Arthur Hoerl (screenplay)

Paul Franklin (additional dialogue)

Produced by
Samuel Diege .... associate producer (as Sam Diege)
George A. Hirliman .... producer
Dwain Esper .... producer (reissue) (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Jack Greenhalgh (uncredited)
 
Film Editing by
Carl Pierson 
 
Art Direction by
Robert Priestley 
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ray Nazarro .... assistant director (as Ray Nazzaro)
 
Art Department
Louis Diage .... properties (as Louis Diege)
 
Sound Department
Hans Weeren .... sound recorder
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Jack Greenhalgh .... chief cameraman
 
Music Department
Abe Meyer .... musical director
Hugo Riesenfeld .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Heinz Roemheld .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Tell Your Children" - USA (original title)
"Dope Addict" - USA (reissue title)
"Doped Youth" - USA (reissue title)
"Love Madness" - USA (reissue title)
"The Burning Question" - USA (reissue title)
See more »
Runtime:
66 min | France:63 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Canada:G (Nova Scotia/Quebec) | Canada:PG (Ontario) | Finland:K-18 (self applied) (2001) | UK:15 (video rating) | USA:TV-PG (TV rating) | USA:PG (1973)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The origins of this film have been the subject of controversy. Officially, this film is not in the copyrighted registry, but the opening card of Reefer Madness reads: Formerly "Tell Your Children" - An G and H Production - Copyrighted (though without a copyright date). Some say it was produced by a church group, in the wake of the Victor Licata 1933 murder case. Dwain Esper sued a distribution company in the 1960s claiming that he had produced the film for the US Army, and that he was the legal copyright owner, but he lost the case.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When Mrs. Lane serves hot chocolate to Mary and Bill, the kettle spout is pointing in different directions between shots.See more »
Quotes:
Blanche:Oh, snap out if it, will ya? It's not our fault. Why did I ever bring him up there anyway? He's just a kid. They can't hang him.
Ralph:Shut up. SHUT UP!
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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39 out of 54 people found the following review useful.
The Gone with the Wind of 30's Exploitation Films, 28 August 1999
Author: Cindy Collins Smith from Falls Church, VA

Because of 70's NORML propaganda falsely claiming that the FBI sponsored Reefer Madness, most viewers believe that this Exploitation classic was meant to be taken seriously. Not so! Thelma White (Mae) has noted in interviews that the producers and director Louis Gasnier asked the cast to "hoke it up." The famous "Faster, Faster" scene is, in fact, a direct parody of a similar scene in the classic musical 42nd Street (a scene in which Dave O'Brien--Ralph in Reefer Madness--played a chorus boy).

So why make a cautionary tale, but do so tongue-in-cheek? Simple. To get around the Hays Code and show more skin than the Code allowed...but also to capitalize on the public's fear of drugs. Either way, the producers made a ton of money on the Exploitation circuit--more than covering their costs for this relatively expensive sub-Poverty Row production.

Made over the course of 3 weeks (most Exploitation films were shot in a few days), using an experienced director and a couple of talented actors who went on to have respectable careers in Hollywood, Reefer Madness is quite simply the finest Exploitation film to come out of the 30's.

The film's funny, is it? Well, the folks who made it thought so too. And they laughed all the way to the bank.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Reefer Madness (1936)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Suprised the dopes in Hollywood haven't remade this seahawk3133
Dr. Carroll's Lecture To The PTA [Spoilers!] Chesterfield_Invincible
What I've learned from Reefer madness... RaoulsBatCountryGrl
Funniest Moment of the Movie! preming1
Watched this while smoking pot matt-mclean-91
Courtroom judge igotcha
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