Thank You for Smoking Reviews
Nick Naylor is a tobacco lobbyist and the vice-president of a tobacco lobby known as the "Academy of Tobacco Studies". The people who work there have been researching the effects of tobacco smoking and lung cancer for 15 years. They claim that their research (which is mostly funded by tobacco companies) have found no correlation whatsoever of lung cancer being a side effect. Nick Naylor is challenged to convince as many people as possible not to smoke. One of the people he has to get by is the Senator of Vermont, Ortolan Finistirre, who is really anti-smoking.
The fact that this film doesn't take any sides is what makes it so special. The film is focused more on Nick Naylor and the arguments he used in the movie which were far ahead of the time when it came out. This film makes fun of both sides of the tobacco industry. The finale when Nick Naylor goes up against Ortolan Finistirre is the best scene in the film. It allows you to see smoking in a different way and it is one of the most thought provoking scenes I've ever seen in cinema. It's timeless.
Also, to say that its plot is daring is an understatement. It's very shocking in a way that the characters who promote smoking and try to get more people to do the act of it are the good guys, and the characters such as the senator who try to promote good health are labeled as the bad guys in the film. Also, the film says that big corporations are good and large body counts leads to long lasting friendships. These portions of its plot make it stand out amongst most comedies and this makes it a very smart film.
Also, the movie actually got me to dislike that senator who was trying to promote good health with a burning passion. Overall, I felt like the senator was wasting his time trying to put pictures on cigarette packages. I think this because I'm willing to bet that 99.9% of everyone who smokes has at one point heard that smoking is bad for you. That hasn't stopped them from smoking so I don't think that Senator Ortolan Finistirre's plan would decrease the amount of smokers that much. I'm not a smoker, but if I wanted to start, I wouldn't be persuaded not to do so just by looking at the pictures on the boxes. The warning labels we already have are just fine. Also, I felt that Nick did a much better job in his debates with him because he made his point more firm and sometimes, his points were so good that the Senator couldn't think of anything to say after he made his point. Also, the senator often spent more time in the debates asking him questions which weren't that good instead of disagreeing with things he said before. I won't spoil what the Senator does at the very end of the movie because it is really funny but he appears to lose his mind by the end.
If a movie has me liking a character trying to convince others to smoke and if it has me disliking a Senator trying to promote good health, I'd say that it definitely did something right. Some may argue whether this is a good or a bad thing, but I think that this is a good thing because it shows the many things that movies can do. I can't think of any other movie which has done this before.
Also, the acting is pretty great. Aaron Eckhart's performance as Nick Naylor is outstanding. He easily carries the whole movies as he is able to deliver his lines with a sense of courage and fearlessness when he is in debates with other people. When he goes up against big people, he treats it like it's just another day at the office. He was the only actor who impressed me, but that's not to say that the other actors did a bad job. They still did a good job as well. Adam Brody, William H. Brady, and J.K. Simmons were good actors too. However, they didn't have the same charm as Aaron Eckhart did in the film.
Like most great, underrated movies however, it's not without its flaws. The pacing can get to be a little tiresome near the middle of the film and some scenes can drag on a little too long, but this is about the only thing which bothered me and even when I felt a bit bored, the film always managed to suck me back in at the next scene.
In conclusion, Thank You For Smoking is a smart and entertaining comedy which will stick with you long after viewing it. It doesn't take any sides and it also has a thought provoking and well thought out meaning behind it. The acting is also pretty good as well. It may have a few drawn out scenes which can get tiresome, but this is a minor criticism on my part. This movie should be viewed by everyone. It is quite an experience to watch it just because it gives you another side of the argument which is very valid and thought provoking. It is a film which definitely flew under the radar.