Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Thank You For Smoking (2005)

"Hey? So do Cancer Boys score a lot of chicks? Eh? Huh? Yeah, thought so."

Genre: Comedy

Starring: Aaron Eckhart (Suspect Zero; In The Company of Men), William H. Macy (The Cooler; Boogie Nights)

Directed By: Jason Reitman

Overview: Nick Naylor is a lobbyist for Big Tobacco. He fights the immoral fight all while teaching his son the valuable lesson of 'doing it for the mortgage'.

Acting: The trivia accompanying this film is quite interesting: the little-known director wrote a personal letter to each of the actors explaining why they would be perfect for the part, and every single one accepted their roles. Rob Lowe worked for one day to finish his job and William H. Macy filmed his parts in one hour. Either way, Eckhart is awesome! Every actor in this delivers splendidly.
Rating: 9

Cinematography: Here's a neat little piece of trivia: throughout the whole movie not one person is seen smoking a cigarette, even after sex. No special effects, no crazy artistic 'rule-of-thirds', just good, plain, solid yet dynamic camera work that does nothing to distract from the story. It is a Hollywood Comedy after all, you can't expect high art from everything.
Rating: 8

Script: "My other interviews have pinned you as a mass murderer, blood sucker, pimp, profiteer and my personal favorite, yuppie Mephistopheles."

There are so many quotable quotes in this film that someone should sell the script as a novel. It's witty, it's wise, it's hilarious and each character has their own spin on how crass their comedy gets. I've been trying to think of what film to compare this style of funny to and nothing comes to mind. It's just really original but intelligent, not toilet humour. You'll love it.
Rating: 9

Plot: The subtext is pretty rich in this too. It points the finger at Big Corp. Inc. and all its evil little subsidiaries be it Guns or Oil (or Journalism actually). Yes, we see a man trying to earn a living by doing a job that everyone knows is wrong but yet he instills some decent lessons in the son that tags along on his trip to California, where his mission is to make smoking cool in Hollywood movies again.
Rating: 8

Mood: A friend of mine said how much he appreciated a comedy that can make fun of children with terminal cancer. Little things like the spoken word 'environmentalist' getting a subtitle of 'pussy', finding a naked man covered in Nicorette patches sitting in the lap of the Lincoln Memorial or the Malboro Man aiming a couple of barrels at the head of the enemy, all this serves to add quirky little amusing moments while still having a thick vein of serious, but not too serious.
Rating: 8

"So, uh, be honest... How many Cancer Boys would you say YOU'VE had?"

Overall Rating: 84% (Hot!!!)

Aftertaste: There's something to be said about the theater experience. I saw this with friends at my local little Indie place, The Bytowne Cinema, and there was this dude sitting behind us who, out of place, would blurt out laughter in a single "HA!!!" or say out loud "Awww" at cute moments. When the credits finally rolled, he sat there alone, tapping his feet and jivin' to the beat. It was awesome to laugh at a movie that was hilarious combined with the boisterous jackass sitting behind us. He added a memorable element to this wonderful time.

Thanks Creepy No Name Guy!