Monday, May 21, 2007

Thank You For Smoking (2005)

2 comments:

  1. Thank You For Smoking is a smart, unconventional comedy based on a novel of the same name, which is the last time I will reference the book.

    The film is narrated by Nick Naylor (Aaron Eckhart), a tobacco spokesman who is quite possibly the world's best spinster. While most people see him as a monster, he views himself as a dean of discussion and a proponent of personal freedom. Naylor lays down solid quips and amusing observations, and Eckhart carries a strong script without a hiccup.

    The movie plays off the various political ideas surrounding the tobacco industry and their lobby, as well as the campaign against smoking, but the film is hardly political. It's not supporting or rallying against cigarettes. The idea that smoking is harmful and addictive is hardly earth shaking, so anyone looking to argue about this film from a political standpoint is a turd.

    Naylor is surrounded by a great supporting cast, led by fellow lobbyists Polly Bailey (Maria Bello) and Bobby Jay Bliss (David Koechner) in what might be their best film roles. Baily is a spokesperson for the Alcohol industry, while Bliss represents Firearms. They are a tight group of friends.

    J.K. Simmons (of J. Jonah Jameson fame), William H. Macy, Robert Duvall, Adam Brody and Rob Lowe all add their considerable talents to the film with some great characters. Even the child, Cameron Bright (as Joey Naylor), avoids being cutesy annoying and does a considerable job. The only low point is Katie Holmes, who plays reporter Jeanette Dantine. Unless she's topless, Holmes has no place being on a film screen. Her acting isn't so much sloppy as it is generally awful. Everytime I see her in a movie, I can't help but wonder if that was the best person they could cast. I would have to imagine no, so I guess I'll chalk it up to a minor error in an otherwise flawless casting job.

    Thank You For Smoking is funny. When it hit theaters, it was a much needed breath of fresh, spring time, somewhat nicotine-laced air for the comedy genre, which was bogged down with by the numbers romantic comedies and horrible teen flicks. TYFS was clever, lacing a good story with punchy jokes and witty dialog delivered by a top notch cast. We rarely get to see such a quality comedy, but when we do, we get gems like this.

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  2. Just watched it. I agree with you - this was fun to watch, and Katie Holmes' role is fortunately dimutive. Also, I just realized the kid's shirt you drew has Spongebob on it. Nice!

    Looking forward to seeing Eckhart's future roles.

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