Sunday, April 23, 2006

Movie Report: Thank You For Smoking

The premise of Thank You For Smoking is great; the result is flawed. Aaron Eckhardt plays Nick Naylor, a slimey public relations shill for the tobacco industry, whose job it is to get more people smoking. The idea he comes up with is to use product placement by paying to have the actors in a new space movie smoke, like actors use to do in the good old days of movies.

The previews that I had seen of this movie showed some funny scenes, so that I passed on seeing Friends With Money,American Dreamz and Joyeux Noel, three movies I still really want to see. Unfortunately, the trailers contain all the best parts and the rest put me to sleep in the middle of the movie.

The movie is so earnestly politically correct that no character actually smokes any cigarettes. How can you have a movie satirizing smoking and not have anyone smoke? I figure it's because the distributors of the movie figure the audience for the movie is non-smokers and they were afraid of offending them.

I know this movie got good reviews at the Sundance Film Festival, but I am not impressed. The movie is certainly better than three-fourths of the other movies playing at the multiplexes, but I should have seen one of the others on my list. I gave it three stars.

No comments: