YMMV: Reefer Madness


Reefer Madness provides examples of:

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Courtesy of Doug Walker's look at the film; the adult audience and the doctor are the ones that are stoned. Notice the adults spend hours in a room paying rapt attention to one man who is telling dramatized and exaggerated stories that likely never happened, and they're all overly paranoid and suspicious.
  • Anvilicious: Subtlety is not this film's strength.
  • Critical Research Failure: Though the gross egregiousness of it is much more hilariously noticeable now that marijuana use is much more widespread and its effects a great deal more common knowledge than when the film came out, anyone with half a functioning brain should have known by the manipulativeness and slanted angle of the film how trustworthy it was even then.
    • Actually, even at the time, people were so aware that marijuana had the opposite effect than portrayed in the film, it was laughed at even then. Hearst's papers went from claiming that the drug was so scary just the sight of it would make Frankenstein die of frightnote  to the drug would make our soldiers too lazy to fight abroad.
    • Even then, the truth was the final product was simply using Drugs Are Bad as an excuse to show behavior that wouldn't otherwise pass The Hays Code.
    • The movie goes so far as to claim that marijuana is more dangerous than heroin.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: The weird piano player from the soda shop. He's even the title image for the RiffTrax stream of the movie on Hulu.
  • Fridge Logic/Plot Hole: Related to Karma Houdini on the main page. The entire film is told in flashback by the principal... but how did he know about Jimmy running the old man over if he was never charged?
    • Also the drug dealers don't actually "deal". Nobody seems to purchase the stuff. Do they just give it away?
      • Well, obviously they get their clients high and then send them to their soda shop, where they spend lots of money on food and drink.
  • Glurge: ...yes.
  • Misaimed Fandom: A movie made in all seriousness to prevent marijuana use is now a pothead cult classic.
  • Narm/Narm Charm: The Romeo and Juliet scene is just painful to watch.
  • Periphery Demographic: Stoners LOVE this movie.
  • So Bad, It's Good: In the 70's, college kids would enjoy smoking "marihuana" and watching the film whenever it came on TV. They found it to be a blast.
    • Even sober, it's hilarious as long as you watch it as a comedy.
  • Society Marches On:
    • Aside from the legalization of marijuana in countries and US states, this was when the drug was spelled "marihuana".
    • This was also a time when Jazz was treated like Gangsta Rap by conservatives.
  • Special Effect Failure: Near the end of the movie, Blanche commits suicide by jumping out a window. It's obviously a dummy that falls.
  • Wangst: Blanche's confession, er, "plea bargain".