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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.
Louis J. Gasnier
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A high-school girl gets involved with a ring of teenage marijuana smokers and starts down the road to ruin. A reporter poses as a soda jerk to infiltrate the gang of teen dope fiends. Written by
As I write this review, my state of New York has just passed the medical marijuana law, on its way to the governor for signature. If the folks who made this independent cheapie could only be around now.
The Assassin Of Youth we are talking about here, pot, grass, weed, tea, and back then it was reefer, but all of that is slang for marijuana. In this film there's a national epidemic of kids going wild on the stuff, committing all kinds of barbarity and mayhem. If only they'd keep it among colored musicians where it belongs.
Arthur Gardner who had a much more successful career as a television producer plays a young reporter who goes incognito to get the story. He gets a job as a soda jerk in Earl Dwire's drugstore. The better to get inside the fast teenage crowd smoking the reefer.
While on the inside he discovers a plot to disinherit Luana Walters from an inheritance by the wild child leader of the reefer set Fay McKenzie and her boyfriend Michael Owen. Seems as though there's a morals clause in her grandmother's will and McKenzie is next in line. So get her messed up with the evil weed and the money is McKenzie's.
Other than the story being ridiculous, the film lacks any production values and the sound is of horrible quality. Earl Dwire gets a few laughs as the druggist and Fern Emmett as the town gossip may have been the inspiration for Margaret Hamilton as the Miss Gulch incarnation from The Wizard Of Oz, the way Emmett peddles around on her bicycle spreading salacious bits to one and all.
If you can make out the sound, this film might be worth a few laughs.
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