Review: Reefer Madness

One of my favourite musicals is Reefer Madness. Its a film that not many people in the UK have heard of, since it was only shown on the Showtime channel in America, but it’s so entertaining.

Back in 1936, a public service film was produced called “Reefer Madness”/”Tell Your Children”. It scared parents by telling them that their children were at risk from a new drug menace, marijuana. It became a cult classic in recent years, as stoners watched it and mocked the over-reaction that one “toot” on a joint would send you crazy.
Somehow this film inspired an off-Broadway musical which satirized the way people reacted to the original exploitation film. This in turn was turned into a movie for Showtime.

The film stars Alan Cumming as many roles (he may not have been the lead, but he certainly was in most of the scenes!), Kristen Bell as Mary Lane (a sweet wholesome girl who is madly in love) and Christian Campbell as Jimmy Harper (Mary’s love interest)

The songs from the musical fit the era quite well, and make me laugh every time I hear them. One song in particular that I love is “Lonely Pew”, Mary’s sad song in church.

The song shows how much she loves Jimmy, and her confusion over why he has been ignoring her lately. This scene then segues into Jimmy and Ralph (a college boy gone bad) stealing the church’s collection box to be able to pay their dealer. Jimmy looks towards the alter, the crucifix starts breathing out smoke and Jimmy is transported to a Vegas style heaven, with Joan of Arc as the emcee.

“No Christian martyr works it harder!”

The story takes a twist towards the end of the film where Mary is tricked into smoking a joint, and turns into a whip wielding, bondage loving dominatrix.
I love the opening song “Reefer Madness” if only for the Thriller-esque dance moves on the school steps by the zombified teenagers.
The musical will be coming to London in March 2009, I can’t wait!

Forgetting Sarah Marshall

Forgetting Sarah Marshall PosterLast night, myself and Helen voyaged to Ellesmere Port to the Vue to watch Forgetting Sarah Marshall. We had wanted to see this film for a while since we heard Kristen Bell was going to be in it. (We love Veronica Mars) On one of the hottest days of the year, we were excited to go to the well air-conditioned room and eat ice cream instead of sunbathing in a beer garden drinking cider.

I tried to keep away from reading any reviews, because I assumed they wouldn’t be too positive, but I had heard from friends of friends that it was awful.
We settled into our seats at the front of the tiered seats (best seats in the cinema, cause you can put your feet up on the bar in front)

The film was a lot more enjoyable than i expected, and there were actually moments that I laughed out loud. There was a little too much male frontal nudity and sex scenes for my liking. We discussed on the way home possible scenarios where that would not be a good film to watch with someone. Helen said that watching the film with your parents wouldn’t be the best idea but I thought that going to see this on a first date would be most awkward.

Russell Brands character was… well, lets just say there wasn’t much acting needed! Kristen Bell was a little irritating, but that was kind of the point. Jason Segel was a bit sad, but again, that was the point. Oh, and we loved the puppets – just Avenue Q enough for us!

Overall, a good film to turn your brain off to – don’t expect anything too taxing or intellectual!

Being such Veronica Mars geeks, we loved that the trailers before the film were for films with Amanda Seyfried (who played Lilly) and Ryan Hansen (Dick Casablancas) in. We hoped for something (anything!) with Jason Dohring in, but sadly there was no trailer for Moonlight.

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