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Reefer Madness


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Editorial Reviews

Dorothy Short, Kenneth Craig. This campy exploitation classic was intended to educate teens against the evils of marijuana-trouble is, they make it look like so much fun! 1936/colorized/66 min/NR/fullscreen.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Dorothy Short, Kenneth Craig, Lillian Miles, Dave O'Brien, Thelma White
  • Directors: Louis J. Gasnier
  • Writers: Arthur Hoerl, Lawrence Meade, Paul Franklin
  • Producers: Dwain Esper, George A. Hirliman, Samuel Diege
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Motion Picture Ventures
  • DVD Release Date: July 30, 2002
  • Run Time: 66 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (142 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00006G8FC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #119,705 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Reefer Madness" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

65 of 68 people found the following review helpful By J. A. Stankunas on May 3, 2004
Format: DVD
The movie Reefer Madness seen by itself is really nothing to brag about, but this special addition for this best-selling cult classic is fantastic. It's a must buy, because for how cheap it is, you really get your money's worth. For the first time ever, I can say that the colorized version (complete with multicolor smoke and over saturated psychedelic color schemes) is better and looks better than the original black and white, and both versions are available to watch which is considerate of the DVD producers to give us both, and it looks as good as we can ever expect. Extra features are fantastic highlighted by a hysterical commentary by Mike Nelson, formerly of Mystery Science Theater 3000, which is the sole reason why I bought this edition. The commentary by the people who colorized the film is also worth a look. I highly recommend this new edition.
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76 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Cindy Collins Smith on August 28, 1999
Format: DVD
In the 70s, NORML spread the myth that the government sponsored Reefer Madness. The truth, however, is that the film was made to play the Exploitation circuit... and was made with tongue firmly planted in cheek.
Thelma White (Mae) has said that the cast was specifically asked to "hoke it up." And the scene in which Ralph demands that the piano be played "Faster... Faster!" comes straight out of 42nd Street--a film in which actor Dave O'Brien (yes, Ralph himself) had played a chorus boy.
So, if the makers of this film weren't serious about their message, why did they make the movie? Well, why did anybody make an Exploitation film in the 30s? To show more skin than the Hays Code allowed, of course, and to capitalize on public fears. Simply put: they wanted to make money. And make money they did.
Unlike most Exploitation fare, Reefer Madness was shot over a period of three weeks, on a relatively large budget (by sub-Poverty Row standards). Using an experienced director and a couple of actors who would go on to do respectable work in Hollywood, this production is the creme-de-la-creme of 30's Exploitation cinema.
Reefer Madness is every bit as hyperbolic as it was intended to be. Just watch it knowing that its makers are laughing at you, and you'll realize that this film is perhaps one of the greatest jokes ever played on an audience in the history of cinema. It's certainly one of the most entertaining.
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Bindy Sue Frønkünschtein TOP 1000 REVIEWER on April 18, 2004
Format: DVD
Bill and Mary were just two typical all-american 25 year old highschool students, playing tennis, drinking hot cocoa, and reciting Shakespeare. Then, Bill got mixed up with the "wrong crowd". He ended up at their house of evil, where He took a "hit" from a marijuana cigarette and "freaked out". Bill joined in with "satan's children" as they danced uncontrollably, played piano jazz, and had wanton abandon sessions! Meanwhile, Mary's brother borrowed her car, took a puff from a "hemp-joint" and drove uncontrollably, running over a pedestrian, laughing mercilessly. Ultimately, poor Mary ended up at the "drug den" herself, being introduced to the "killer weed" by Ralph, a crazed "pot fiend" given to uncontrollable fits of hysterical laughter. Ralph took advantage of Mary, causing Bill (who was having a wanton abandon session with a female "pot-head" in another room) to lose control and attack Ralph. Suddenly, the swinging "dope pad" was turned into a murder house, as the co-owner of the hangout drew a gun. Bill fought him and Mary was inadvertantly shot dead! Bill was framed for Mary's homicide and Ralph was committed to an insane asylum. And, remember the wicked girl Bill was having wanton abandon with? Well, she was called upon to testify in court, and wound up diving out a window! Let us learn the lessons here! Remember, smoke only good wholesome tobacco, or drink harmless, invigorating alcohol; and leave the "reefer" to the ne'er-do-wells and hepcats of the world...
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mart Sander on January 28, 2002
Format: DVD
Just finished the three movies in a row, and there are no regrets! This DVD is fun, and more: there are nice extras including an almost finished crazed strip act, trailers, picture gallery and all, and three flicks well presented. The picture/sound quality is not at all as bad as I suspected, in fact some "quality" classics can be found released in much inferior quality. And the movies... they are great, and if you love the atmosphere of the thirties, these films, especially watched late night, give you the wonderful feeling of really attending a wild party, even without actual reefer involved. Whereas "Marihuana" is really stupid and "Reefer Madness" beautifully overblown, "Assassin of youth" is actually quite grasping. All films involve some pretty people, posh clothes and wild lindyhop. What more to be desired???
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By "magnanamus" on December 21, 2000
Format: DVD
Kids, this has got to be one of the funniest titles available today, and it's SO old! Reefer Madness is an old Anti-Marijuana short film in which high school students who "toke hits of reefer ciragrettes" become "immoral, unjust and unforgivable" because, and I swear I'm not kidding, "Marijuana is more addictive and destructive then her sisters Heroin and Cocaine." This movie has it all, from slight truths to bold faced lies! It is a true testament to the American Marijuana War and just how hillarious our leaders can be at times. Buy a copy today! Do something for the cause.
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