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Reefer Madness Is Spreading! An Analysis Of The Controversial Film Of The Late 1930's "Reefer Madness"

967 words - 4 pages

In the late 1930's a film was released to supposedly educate society on the horrible epidemic that the drug marijuana had created. The film Reefer Madness hit the theaters in hopes to steer people away from using marijuana. The film starts by showing headlines about how marijuana abuse is spreading across the United States of America rapidly and must be halted. Parents are told to learn about the evils of marijuana and to steer their children from falling into its trap. Dr. Carroll who is played by Joseph Forte is holding a meeting about the ongoing reefer issue for the shocked parents of the students at his school. He tells them that marijuana is more addictive than heroin, and causes people to hallucinate. He even tells them that marijuana can lead to violent acts sometimes inappropriate sexual behavior. To demonstrate his points, he starts telling a story about a recent case involving students at their very own school. Dr. Carroll tells the parents he knows the real facts regarding this case.The use of tobacco is never questioned, but the horrors and abuse of using marijuana are very well illustrated in this film. Dr. Carroll's story is about an apartment which is owned by two marijuana dealers who entice gullible teenagers into their place. They are trying to get these kids addicted while they are still young in hopes to expand their clientele. Its funny because not once do you see anyone actually paying for drugs. They just hand out joints to these kids like their pieces of candy. Jack who is played by Carlton Young is the main deal. It shows a few scenes of him visiting his boss where he gets more marijuana and plots on getting more and more kids to start using the drug.Three innocent young people are sucked in by being told they had a party to go to. Jimmy played by Warren McCollum and Bill played by Kenneth Craig are two commendable students up until this point, and later on in the film Jimmy's sister and Bill's girlfriend Mary played by Dorothy Short. One toke of a joint and they become hooked. The weed makes them laugh uncontrollably, dance in crazy ways, and indulge in immoral sexual activities. Jimmy becomes so addicted he ends up running over a pedestrian while driving his car to the dealer's house. Bill's behavior is suffering too. These kids had been the type in the past to turn down coffee fearing it may cause them to become unbalanced.Tragedy strikes when Mary goes to the apartment looking for Jimmy. She is offered a joint and thoroughly enjoys it. She almost gets raped by drug crazed Ralph played by Dave O'Brien because he has a crazy hallucination that makes him attack her. Before it gets too far Mary gets shot in a scuffle between Bill and Jack killing her instantly. Bill gets blamed and goes on trial for...

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