This movie is just… stupid. It deals with the ever-growing threat of…. MARIHUANA! (and no, I didn’t just mispell marijuana. That’s how they spell it in the movie) Basically shaping how uneducated people view pot for generations to come, this movie was very big for it’s time, among anti-pot people and stoners alike. The movie was directed by Louis Gasnier and is chock-full of unknown actors. It was originally financed by a church group and called Tell Your Children. Sounds like a sweet little indie film, doesn’t it? Ooh, boy, just you wait.
The film starts out with a forward, which I guess movies did back then. Still, I had a big laugh thinking how this should be called Reefer Madness: The Audiobook. But I digress. The text, which scrowls from the bottom to the top of the screen a la Star Wars, we learn that public enemy number one of the 30’s wasn’t gang violence, bootleggers, or economic recession. No, its marijuana. Marijuana, of course, leads to uncontrollable laughter, overpowering sexual desires, horrid hallucinations, and sooner or later, it leads to permenant insanity. If you’re already laughing, then don’t worry; this is only the first three minutes of the damn film.
After the foreword, we are treated to a parent-teacher conference, led by the wormiest guys I’ve ever seen. At this meeting, we’re treated to gems like, “More vicious, more deadly, than these soul-destroying drugs, (cocaine and opium) is the menace of marijuana.” Sensing that the crowd’s BS detectors are going off, the wormy guy goes off into a tirade, while the scene fades out to the real movie.
Starting out, we see an apartment owned by Mae Collman and her lover, Jack. Jack is in the business of wheelin’ and dealin’ drugs to high school students, luring poor, unsuspecting children into his clutches… But anyway, as Mae is getting ready, Jack goes out to meet up with Ralph, who is by far the funniest person in this movie. More on that later. Jack spots our other main characters, Bill, Jimmy, and Jimmy’s sister, Mary.
As Jack tries to smooth talk all three of them into coming with them to a party, the strong-willed teens refuse, except for Jimmy. Jimmy, aparently not noticing the devil-horns underneath both Jack’s and Ralph’s hair. Jack leads the two to the party, where we see our first horrible side-effect of smoking pot: Being awesome at the piano. As the party dies down, Jimmy is lead to ANOTHER party. Again, one of the monstrous side-effects of pot smoking: being invited to parties.
Fearing that the lesson they’re trying to teach is already falling apart, the movie decides to cut to Bill and Mary, studying for math. But, since any normal man knows that Shakespeare gets girls hot, Bill decides to read her some Romeo & Juliet. As they are mid-make out, the mother of Mary and Jim comes out to shoo horny Bill away. At Bill’s home, we see he lives a quaint life, with his younger brother, mother, and father. And why, movie, was this important?
The next day, Mary has lent Jim her car for the day while she shops. Jim takes Bill over to the bar, where they meet up with Ralph and Co. Ralph suggests that they head over to Mae’s house, for another party. Jeez, they have more parties than the Vegas Strip. When they get to Jack’s, Jack realizes he doesn’t have a lot of weed left for the party, and his car’s at the shop. Mae suggests to use Jim’s car to go get some more reefer. While Jack’s getting some reefer, he gives one to Jim, who lights up right away. As Jim drives, we can see even worse effects from weed, as it makes him drive speed demon’s speeds of 45 miles an hour, and cause a hit-and-run. Back at the party, we see Bill being peer pressured into taking his first puff! NO, BILLY! Think of your young, no-named brother! There’s also the first reason Ralph is the funniest character in this movie. He jsut starts laughing for no reason. True, the movie says that uncontrollable laughter happens, but still, it’s funny.
This movie is so full of subplots, I’m just going to describe a few of them really fast. The wormy guy is concerned about Bill’s declining school skills, the cops are looking for the hit-and-runner, which makes her want to look for Jim. Meanwhile, Bill’s at Mae’s house, getting his freak on with Ralph’s girl. Mary’s at Mae’s, where Ralph gets a little too frisky with Mary. Bill, who comes in thinking she’s giving herself up to Ralph, is understandably angry.
As Bill attacks Ralph in a drug-fueled rage, Jack comes in with a gun to knock him out. Bill, ever the quick little thing, gets into a fight with Jack who accidently shoots Mary, which begs the question as to why he chose to use a gun instead of something a little less… bullet-shooting. Also, if you look closely, you’ll notice that marijuana also dries up all your blood, because Mary isn’t bleeding out of her wound at all. Anyways, she dies. Jack, being the clever devil that he is, decides to frame Bill by putting his fingerprints on the gun.
Bill is in deep doodoo as he is found guilty for manslaughter. Meanwhile, at Jack’s hideout, Ralph is spazzing out like never before, adding to the whole, he’s-funny-as-hell thing. While on a walk, Jack decides the best way to make Ralph calm down is by giving him a new smoke hole for his head. Ralph, using his newfound power of telepathy, deduces that Jack wants to kill him. So, he beats him with a cue stick, while his cheating girlfriend uncontrollably laughs at it. The cops come and find Ralph crazed and take Mae, Ralph, and Cheating Girl into custody.
At the police station, Mae tells them everything, Jimmy confesses, and Cheating Girl gets Bill off the hook. Oh, and Cheating Girl kills herself. Some horsecrap about feeling guilty or something, I didn’t really care at this point. I wanted to know what happened to Ralph. He is, of course, completely and utterly INSANE. And all this happened because of the demonic, horrible, monstrous, disastorous, bad MARIHUANA. The movie ends with the wormy guy giving a very half-hearted speech which ends with him breaking the fourth wall. END.
This movie is so bad, that it’s great. It’s so unintentionally funny, mainly because of the general misconceptions of marijuana, the spelling of marijuana, and the amazingly-bad overacting. If you’re a fan of overacting, then watch this film. If you’re a stoner, watch and laugh. Basically, if you haven’t been living under a rock and actually know that pot really isn’t that bad, then watch this and laugh your butt off. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars, if only for Ralph.