So this is coming from a girl who used to own a vintage-y looking print of the original movie, but I think it’s crazy-cool that there is a new version — which happens to be a Showtime movie musical Reefer Madness starring Alan Cumming no less.
It’s a bespectacled and high-haired Alan Cumming who sets up his movie
screen in the Anytown U.S.A. high-school classroom, stares down a
roomful of shocked parents and then breaks into the title song as a
horde of pot-crazed zombies starts crashing through the windows.
Zombies are funny.
Showtime said of the original film:
The original 1936 Reefer Madness film was so
exaggerated and horribly acted that it eventually became a kind of cult
classic. Executive producer/writer/lyricist Kevin Murphy refers to it
as "the Rosetta Stone, the standard by which all other silly midnight
cult movies are judged, with the notable exception of The Rocky Horror
Picture Show, which is the granddaddy of them all.
"Although the original film, which was called Tell Your
Children, was made by a church group, it was later transformed by a guy
named Dwain Esper, who at the time, was a very notorious maestro of
exploitation films. He gave it a sexier title, cut in some salacious
images of Mae rolling up her stockings very, very slowly, girls
skinny-dipping and so on. By pretending that it was actually about
something very high-minded and moralistic, it actually allowed people
to get their kinky thrills.
"Of course, they had all their facts wrong, so it became sort
of a hysterical and overblown piece. One puff in the film leads to
manic energy, going insane, raping and killing with mad abandon. The
reality is that you get a little sleepy, laugh a lot and maybe eat a
great deal of food."
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