Public enemy no. 1

Unknown, 1951

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A moral guidance docudrama delivering a strong message about the evils of alcohol. A teenager fails a sobriety test after the police pull him over for erratic driving. He avoids arrest when the police decide to release him into the care of his physician father. Concerned by his son’s behaviour, the father organises a weekend in the country to impart his views about the dangers of alcohol. Throughout the weekend, dad discusses how alcoholic beverages are made, advertised and sold and their damaging effect on mind and body. Despite its intention, the film’s moral tone and wholesome setting would force most teenagers to resort to alcohol.

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Fred S Nieman

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National Women's Christian Temperance Union



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