This is probably one of the best flicks out there right now and for good reason.
Thank You For Smoking is a witty satire on the smoking industry, or rather the “spin” industry. Aaron Eckhart brilliantly plays Nick Naylor, Big Tobacco’s chief spokesman, the person sent out to fight their public battles on CNN and daytime talk shows. His job is to ultimately spin the truth which is probably one of the toughest jobs when you’re doing it for Big Tobacco in a health conscience, anti-smoking world. The film takes a funny look at what pro-tobacco lobbying in the U.S. looks like. Naylor is the best at what he does and even enjoys it because he’s so good. Though the plot of the film centers around Naylor’s “moral flexibility” and his struggle to remain a role model for his son.
One of the funniest parts would be Naylor’s two best friends whom he constantly meets to have lunch with; both lobbyists for the alcohol and gun industry respectively. Together they are the self-called M.O.D squad (Merchants of Death) and talk strategies and (almost proudly) whose industry has the higher death toll. When you watch the news, whether it’s lobbyists or politicians, spin is everywhere. This movie just turns all of that, breaks it down, and produces a satarical version of reality.
The cast also has Katie Holmes playing a story hungry Washington reporter, Robert Duvall as the “Captain” of the Tobacco industry, Rob Lowe as a Hollywood agent and William H. Macy as the anti-smoking campaigning senator. Adam Brody from the O.C. also plays a short but overly caffeinated (and therefore funny) assistant to Rob Lowe’s character.
The directing from “first timer” Jason Reitman is actually clever and fun, pausing certain scenes to have Eckhart do a voice over for a truly Nick Naylor moment. Probably the most pivotal scenes are those where Naylor is having a moment with his son, explaining to him his job and in essence, the certain realities of America.
Whether you are pro smoking, anti smoking or just apathetic, you will enjoy the movie. It’s clever and witty with a solid story and scenes that will just have you laughing in no time. I highly recommend it, so go check it out.
Bottom Line: 4/5