ByMara Mullikin, writer at
I'm an aspiring writer, filmmaker, actress and werewolf.
Mara Mullikin

Based off the 30's propaganda film of the same name, Reefer Madness started its musical production in Los Angeles in 1998. With music geniuses Kevin Murphy, and Dan Studney behind the creation. The show was directed by Andy Fickman (who would go onto direct the TV movie), and eventually moved its way up to being an off Broadway production with choreography by Paula Abdul. Unfortunately, following the tragic events of 9/11, it was shut down just days after its first performance.

In 2005, it was made into a TV musical on HBO and called Reefer Musical: The Movie Musical. The majority of the cast returned, such as: Christian Campbell, Kristen Bell, John Kassir, Robert Torti, Ana Gasteyer, and Amy Spanger. This film also hilariously features Alan Cumming, who not only "narrates" the movie, but also pops up throughout the picture in an ensemble of roles.

Some spoilers follow, so please take heed.

Admittedly, there aren't many movies where you can see a singing six-ab Jesus, William Shakespeare, zombies, the devil, and a school dance honoring FDR transpiring in the same film. The framing of this picture is an assembly being held at a school where a lecturer (played by Cummings) is showing a cautionary film chronicling an all American boy Jimmy Harper (Campbell) and his downfall caused by the worst substance of all...MARIJUANA!

See, I told you!
See, I told you!

To not spoil everything, while at a malt shop, Jimmy confides to his bud that he doesn't know how to swing, and doesn't want to embarrass his girlfriend Mary Lane (Bell) at the school dance. Jack (a drug dealer played by Steven Weber) overhears his issue, and offers to teach him. He's able to convince him after putting on a saucy demonstration with Miss Poppy (Neve Campbell), and brings him back to the "reefer den". There Jimmy meets a former college student (Kassir), an air headed hussy (Spanger), and the mother of the den (Gasteyer). And through persuasion, and song they're able to coax Jimmy into trying the devil's plant. And from there, anything that could, couldn't, shouldn't, or wouldn't happen happens.

While taking jabs at, and poking fun at the original film it's also a fun comedy, with a great cast, and has incredible streak with its musical numbers. This is honestly one of my favorites. And if you enjoyed Rocky Horror, you'll relish this gem too. It's a must see, and you'll feel like you're on a trip yourself. Hopefully you don't resort to cannibalism.


Would You See Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical?


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