Philanthropist Paul Lorenz is one of the more public faces in the fight against behavior that spreads the many "social diseases", such as syphilis and gonorrhea. An example of such behavior... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vivian McGill ...
...
Mrs. Hamilton
Al Rigali ...
Mr. Hamilton
Mark Daniels ...
Wendel Hope (as Stanley Barton)
Linda Lee Hill ...
Sheila Wayne
Ruth Edell ...
Mrs. Fay
Charles Olcott ...
Paul Lorenz
Ed Redding ...
Dr. Hampton
Pat Lawrence ...
Tom Lorenz
Allen Tower ...
Dr. Harris (as Allan Tower)
Richard Bengali ...
Mr. Maynard
William Blake ...
Dr. Grenoble
Frank Howsen ...
Dr. Bayard
Allan Lee ...
Mr. Winthrop
Jean Temple ...
Mrs. Winthrop
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Storyline

Philanthropist Paul Lorenz is one of the more public faces in the fight against behavior that spreads the many "social diseases", such as syphilis and gonorrhea. An example of such behavior is going to or performing in burlesque shows, which promotes casual sex. Indeed, many in the audience at one burlesque show in New York have only sex on their mind, including young unmarried couple James and Jane, office colleagues Peggy and Betty (Peggy who is trying to seduce Betty), and Paul Lorenz's son himself, Tom Lorenz, who is looking forward to an after show group sex party, which will include some of the girls from the show, such as Sheila Wayne, who has syphilis but treats it as casually as her sex. One of the show girls who won't be attending the party is Millicent Hamilton. From a small town, good girl Millicent's pre-engagement to her boyfriend Wendel Hope was interrupted when she won a beauty contest with a trip to New York. She found life in New York more difficult than she expected... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Protect your daughters!

Genres:

Drama

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 April 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Human Wreckage  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

If two virgins have sex together, even while unmarried, they are not at risk for catching a venereal disease. See more »

Crazy Credits

Prints shown on television, and marketed on VHS and DVD carry a copyright date of MCMXXXIV (1934), which is incorrect. It should be MCMXXXVIII (1938). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Playboy: The Story of X (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Wedding March
(uncredited)
Music by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Syphilis can drive you insane. So can the boredom created by movies like this.
17 July 2011 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

I dipped into my Mill Creek Cult Classics DVD set this weekend because I was bored. Really, I could have found something better to do (honestly, I was too tired to give anything real my attention). These movies should not really be labeled Cult Classics, but rather "Goofy Old Propaganda Films That Are Mostly Terrible and Which You Don't Really Need to See - Knowing That They Existed Is More Than Enough." I suppose that'd be a bit wordy, though. And it really doesn't help that the quality is abysmal. Obviously, nobody cared enough to preserve these films, but I really wonder what Reefer Madness would look like in high definition. Sex Madness is a pure propaganda film which wants to warn its audience about the dangers of syphilis and other "social diseases." You have to wonder if anyone in 1938 actually plunked down a nickel to see films like this. The film basically consists of a doctor telling a skank that she has contracted syphilis, and what that entails. The authority figures of the film declare that people need to be more honest about sex, but what their honesty amounts to is shouting "keep your damn legs shut or you'll get sores! This is what they look like. Aren't they gross?" Its second piece of advice is probably more helpful: people with syphilis or other VDs need to see a real doctor, and not some quack. I'll bet that, in their embarrassment, the syphilitic would often turn to more discreet, illegal doctors (there's probably some implied abortion there, too). The film is, of course, a total bore, and it looks like crud.


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