• Image of Reefer Madness
  • Image of Reefer Madness
Reefer Madness


Reefer Madness (originally made as Tell Your Children and sometimes titled as The Burning Question, Dope Addict, Doped Youth and Love Madness) is a 1936-1939 American propaganda exploitation film revolving around the melodramatic events that ensue when high school students are lured by pushers to try marijuana — from a hit and run accident, to manslaughter, suicide, attempted rape, and descent into madness due to marijuana addiction.

Originally financed by a church group under the title Tell Your Children, the film was intended to be shown to parents as a morality tale attempting to teach them about the dangers of cannabis use. However, soon after the film was shot, it was purchased by producer Dwain Esper, who re-cut the film for distribution on the exploitation film circuit beginning in 1938/39 through the 40s and 50s.

The film was "rediscovered" in the early 1970s and gained new life as satire among advocates of cannabis policy reform. Although finding a popular audience as a cult film, critics have panned it as one of the worst films ever made.

Alpha Video (1936)
DVD 67 min. USA/English

Director Louis J. Gasnier
Producer Dwain Esper; George A. Hirliman
Writer Paul Franklin; Arthur Hoerl

Dorothy Short Mary Lane
Kenneth Craig Bill Harper
Lillian Miles Blanche
Dave O'Brien Ralph Wiley
Joseph Forte Dr. Carroll
Harry Harvey Jr. Junior
Warren McCollum Jimmy Lane
Patricia Royale Agnes
Thelma White Mae Colman
Carleton Young Jack Perry

Edition Details
Region Free; PAL