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Reefer Madness

Dorothy Short, Kenneth Craig, Lillian Miles
marijuana | opium, raw | heroin | morphine
Spoiler alert
Blog entry

Excerpts from rolling text: "frightful toll of the new drug menace which is destroying the youth of America... Marihuana... violent narcotic -- an unspeakable scourge... first effect is sudden, violent, uncontrollable laughter; then come dangerous hallucinations... fixed ideas... conjuring up monstrous extravagances... emotional disturbances... inability to direct thoughts,... loss of all power to resist physical emotions... acts of shocking violence... ending often in incurable insanity... results of Marihuana." (0:01)

Dr. Alfred Carroll speaks to the School-Parents Association about the need for "... compulsory education on the subject of narcotics in general... marijuana in particular."
"fight is directed by the Department of Narcotics, Washington" He reads a letter from the Narcotics Bureau: "The weed marijuana is growing in every state in the union."
Scenes of marijuana growing in Brooklyn, joint rolling machine in use, man with piles of white powder (in an evidence room?).
"deadly narcotic... sale of marijuana even more difficult to detect and halt than the traffic of drugs such as opium, morphine and heroin." Scenes of hidden drugs discovered, destroyed (0:03)

A piano player lights a joint, smokes. (0:14)

Drug dealer Mae passes out joints to students Mary and Bill in her apartment. Ralph smokes then laughs. (0:22)

Mary's brother Jimmy drives recklessly after smoking, hits a pedestrian. (0:25)

"Bureau of Investigation" office: An agent talks to Dr. Carroll: "distributing the narcotic to students... " (0:27)
"Marijuana is not like other forms of dope."
"In 1930 the records on MJ... 16 years old and a marijuana addict..."
Dr Carroll: "Under the influence of the drug he killed his entire family with an axe."
Agent: "a reefer smoker..." (0:27)

Intoxication portayed: laughter, disinhibition. (0:32)

Ralph gets Mary to smoke a joint. She giggles. Ralph attacks her. Bill intervenes. (0:36)

Dr. Carroll on the witness stand at Bill's trial talks about the effects of marijuana: "at times dissociation." (0:43)

Ralph puffing, getts angry, Jack tells Mae, "All we have to do is keep him from having too many reefers." (0:45)

The prosecuting attorney tells the jury, "The defendant might have become momentarily insane when he fired the shot... but the defense has been unable to prove that he was insane. William Harper was sane when he visited the apartment... He was sane when he... "
Dr. Carroll tells the court he saw Bill playing tennis miss "the ball by as much as 3 or 4 feet... marijuana... causes errors in time and space."
An attorney objects: "The witness isn't qualified to express opinions on the effect of narcotics."
Dr. Carroll: "He suddenly burst into an uncontrollable fit of hysterical laughter." (0:48)

A juror argues to the other jurors, "But he might have been insane when he did it."
"But supposing he was insane?"
"But there's a reasonable doubt about the boy's sanity."
Jury foreman: "We can't have every murderer hiding behind the... that he's insane." (0:49)

Ralph is agitated, pacing. He orders Mae to "Bring me some reefers." He becomes labile and cries. He gives a joint to Blanche and urges her to "Play faster."
Ralph tells Jack, illustrating paranoia, "You want to kill me."
He beats Jack while Blanche laughs. (0:52)

Blanche tell the judge, referring to Bill "He was so doped up..." (1:00)

Blanche throws herself through a window to her death.
The judge admonishes Bill to "keep you from the vicious pitfalls of marijuana." (1:03)

Referring to Ralph, the prosecuting attorney tells the judge that he waves trial because he is "convinced that he is hopelessly and incurably insane, a condition caused by the drug marijuana to which he was addicted. It is recommended that the defendant be placed in an institution for the criminally insane for the rest of his natural life. (1:05)

Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical