Thank You for Smoking (2005)
The chief spokesperson and lobbyist Nick Naylor is the Vice-President of the Academy of Tobacco Studies. He is talented in speaking and spins argument to defend the cigarette industry in the most difficult situations. His best friends are Polly Bailey that works in the Moderation Council in alcohol business, and Bobby Jay Bliss of the gun business own advisory group SAFETY. They frequently meet each other in a bar and they self-entitle the Mod Squad a.k.a. Merchants of Death, disputing which industry has killed more people. Nick's greatest enemy is Vermont's Senator Ortolan Finistirre, who defends in the Senate the use a skull and crossed bones in the cigarette packs. Nick's son Joey Naylor lives with his mother, and has the chance to know his father in a business trip. When the ambitious reporter Heather Holloway betrays Nick disclosing confidences he had in bed with her, his life turns upside-down. But Nick is good in what he does for the mortgage.
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It is so daring, it is so ambitious, it is so thrilling and weird and pointed and powerful. I never knew where it was going.
It is an exhilarating, distressing, funny and profound film, with one of the more memorable film scores in years,
It's simply great fun, a winsome film and an occasionally over-the-top luxury fantasy that never flags.
"Nick Naylor doesn't hide the truth... he filters it." God damn that is a catchy tagline."Thank You For Smoking" tells the story of Nick Naylor, a smooth-talking tobacco lobbyist. Naylor is a master of rhetoric, twisting language to make sure the people of America are smoking his company's cigarettes.note: mild spoilers followThe biggest flaw in this movie is the lack of development in its main character. At the end of the movie, Naylor isn't changed. He has undergone no apparent ethical awakening... but he's okay. For some reason, he gets a promotion outside the tobacco industry and has a better-paying, less morally objectionable job in which he can use the same talents he had as a lobbyist. This new job is the cherry on top of a character arc that makes no sense. The promotion feels undeserved, and it is an unneeded happy note to end a pretty dark film.Through Naylor, the film tells two contradictory stories. On one hand, the movie expects you to feel sympathetic that Naylor has such a terrible job. On the other, the movie argues that there is nothing wrong with Naylor's job at all, and he is an artist of rhetoric who deserves to be proud of his work.Throughout the movie, Naylor seems to apologize for his career achievements. He bemoans his choice in profession, saying that he didn't intend to be a lobbyist and he didn't study to be one. It was, in his words, "the only thing he was ever good at" and that's why he took the job. The viewer get the feeling that our tragic hero was fated into this situation. Throughout the film, he also repeatedly says that he only keeps his job so that he can pay his mortgage, almost implying that he'd leave it behind if he could.At the same time, the film argues that its hero's great tragedy isn't very bad at all. He often seems proud of his work, and there are a number of scenes that show Naylor teaching his son the tricks of rhetoric he uses. In these scenes, we get the sense that Naylor is clever and his job is something to be admired. Naylor appears to actively recruit his son to become a lobbyist, even though the movie spends so much time arguing lobbying is bad.In the climactic scene of the movie, during a court hearing, we expect Naylor to tell the truth and throw the tobacco companies under the bus. If he does this, his arc is complete. Even if this arc was a bit uneven throughout the movie, a sudden epiphany can save his character. But he doesn't have an epiphany- he sings the party line and walks out of the courtroom as pro-tobacco as ever. This is frustrating and confusing for the viewer.In the end, the viewer feels lost. What point was the movie trying to make? The movie was funny enough, and had solid acting, et cetera- but the story had no payoff and made no point. I can't recommend this movie because of its central flaw. Others may enjoy the ride, but I couldn't get over the vapid conclusion.
Personally, one of the most amazing movies I've watched. It is a light movie which sends out a very powerful message. It not just mocks the government's failed attempts against tobacco and shows strategies used by MNCs but also focuses on parenthood. It is shown how society imposes its rules over the kids from a very young age instead of telling them all possible pros and cons of the topic in question and letting them decide for themselves. It portrays how a parent must let the kids to think instead of forcing prejudices. It shows the real face of modern day media and corporations. The psychological tricks used in advertising to convince the customers is mocked as well. The actors have played their part perfectly. Not to mention the soundtrack is amazing.
Nick's job is spinning good PR for the tobacco industry, and he is very good at it. Unfortunately, for all his quick thinking and gift of the gab, there are those who feel that he is doing the devil's work and hold him responsible. Nick has to tread a careful line to keep his life in balance.Based on Christopher Buckley's sharply funny satirical novel, Jason Reitman's film is well adapted, well cast and well directed. Nick is the sort of part any actor would leap at, and Aaron Eckhart gives a tour de force performance. There is plenty of food for thought, some decent plot, and a great deal of humour: Nick's sheer nerve in fronting some of the defensive lines he comes up with is funny, funny stuff.
'Thank You For Smoking' couldn't be an easy film to sell. It basically tells a lot of people (possibly smokers!) what they don't want to hear, while, at the same time, making that smug smile that only NON-smokers wear, just that little bit more hard to take.However, despite trying to offend most people, it actually works. It's a clever and subtle form of humour which is completely devoid of any (American) 'pie jokes.' It features a great ensemble cast and none one of which lets the side down. It's hard to pick a favourite among so many. You just have to put them all together and let them get on with it (maybe Row Lowe steals every scene?).If you're in the mood for something a little bit more satirical, then give this a go - living proof that Americans DO understand satire just as much as us Brits.http://thewrongtreemoviereviews.blogspot.co.uk/