An interesting story, almost done like a documentary, Thank You For Smoking is original, and quirky, thoughtful and funny. Aaron Eckhart is the lobbyist for the tobacco industry who can talk his way into, and out of, just about anything. We get a kind of insider’s look into the mechanics of the business – and the personalities and motivations that go into it. The dialogue is sharp, the characters are well drawn and fun to watch. Adam Brody (Seth from The OC) has a nice role as a Hollywood agent’s assistant – he’s so dead-on it’s scary! Maria Bello, Katie Holmes, William H. Macy and others round out an excellent cast. I really liked this one.
The chief spokesperson and lobbyist Nick Naylor is the Vice-President of the Academy of Tobacco Studies. He is talented in speaking and spins argument to defend the cigarette industry in the most difficult situations. His best friends are Polly Bailey that works in the Moderation Council in alcohol business, and Bobby Jay Bliss of the gun business own advisory group SAFETY. They frequently meet each other in a bar and they self-entitle the Mod Squad a.k.a. Merchants of Death, disputing which industry has killed more people. Nick's greatest enemy is Vermont's Senator Ortolan Finistirre, who defends in the Senate the use a skull and crossed bones in the cigarette packs. Nick's son Joey Naylor lives with his mother, and has the chance to know his father in a business trip. When the ambitious reporter Heather Holloway betrays Nick disclosing confidences he had in bed with her, his life turns upside-down. But Nick is good in what he does for the mortgage.