Thank You For Smoking
Starring: Aaron Eckhart, J.K. Simmons, Robert Duvall, William H. Macy and Katie Holmes
Release Date: April 14 2006
Every now and then when my girlfriend and I are debating over what movie to watch we will start throwing out movie titles from years past. This usually results in a lot of "trailer" watching on youtube as one tries to sway the other to agree to a particular movie. Last night I won.
Written and Directed by Jason Reitman Thank You For Smoking(TYFS) was released way back in 2006 and was critically acclaimed despite an average performance at the box office. Starring several familiar faces it follows Nick Naylor, Big Tobaccos cheif spokesman, as he prepares to deal with a piece of legislation that would have a giant skull and cross bones placed on the packaging of cigarettes to identify them as poison. While this may be the main story arc it's the relationships revealed in the subplots that make this movie worth watching.
Nick Naylor is wonderfully portrayed by Aaron Eckhart as the ultimate slime-ball but not without heart which is why he is tolerable. This character dances on the line of tastefulness and if acted by anyone else may have come across as insufferable. But Aaron with his natural good looks, charisma and charm makes Nick Naylor not only tolerable but someone you root for.
At it's heart TYFS is satirical comedy at it's finest. While TYFS was based off of a novel, Jason Reitman deserves a lot of credit for producing a screenplay that never seems to lag. In a movie where dialogue is everything(this movie is about convincing people that cigarettes aren't bad for them after all) each character gets their screen time and has their moment in the sun.
To be perfectly honest this movie surprised me with how much I loved it. It's clever, witty and perfectly acted across the board. I can't believe I waited so long to watch it and I can't wait to watch it again.