Hello there, ladies and gentlemen. I know this post doesn’t have anything to do with the Month of Spooks, as in at all. But I heard about a fun little blogathon a while back called “Things I Learned from the Movies”, which would be held by the lovely ladies from Speakeasy and Silver Screenings. I was of course intrigued by this idea because not everyone will learn the same things from every movie. I also like the two hosts a bit and have followed them for a while, so it’s just fun for me to participate in something like this for them. So don’t worry, there will be more Month of Spooks to come, but right now this is the thing taking priority. Then let’s just get into it!
So I have decided to focus on the movie “Thank You for Smoking” when it comes to things I learned from any movie. There are reasons for this, but I’ll get into it in a bit. But before we get into the learning I will have to explain what this movie is about for anyone who hasn’t seen it. *Ahem*.
“Thank You for Smoking” is a 2006 satirical comedy about Nick Naylor (Aaron Eckhart), a spokesman for the tobacco industry who is willing to bullshit anyone or anything to keep the tobacco industry profitable. But it’s not too easy for him, seeing as there are people who are on the opposing side of the smoking argument that he has to verbally battle with. Nick also have to be role model for his son (Cameron Bright). So as you understand he has a lot on his plate. That’s the basic plot as explained (mediocrely) by me. Caught up? Good. So let’s get into it!
So what have I learned from this movie? A few things actually.
Lesson 1: How to win an argument.
Not gonna lie, this lesson kind of ties in to the next one, but I still wanna kind of put it as it’s own first. Anyway… as I said before, Nick’s job is basically to convince people that smoking is great and that people should do it. But there are of course people who are against that argument, that say that smoking is awful and should be banned/stopped. Really, it’s kind of an unwinnable confrontation since both sides will lay down arguments for their opinion. Which means you have to be smart about it, which Nick of course is. To illustrate this, there’s a clever little scene between him and his son at an amusement park that is done a more child-friendly way. Instead of cigarettes v not cigaretts, it’s chocolate v vanilla. Instead of proving that his opinion is right, he proves that his son’s opinion is wrong, which automatically makes Nick right. It’s a clever little analogy for what he does for a living. Have a look:
Did you get it? By proving his son wrong, Nick was in the right. And with that said, this of course kind of leads into the next lesson.
Lesson 2: The freedom of choice.
If you listened closely to what Nick said during the video, he talked about how we need choice when it comes to our ice cream. When you have two sides of an argument, there is a bit of a problem because both sides try to prove that both of them are right and that every other opinion/choice is wrong… it’s basically the internet in a nutshell. You can’t choose for yourself, you have to be forced to one side of the argument. But a lot of these times when people get forced, there’s no real research/education behind it. People should be properly informed about certain things in society so that they can make up their minds about it.
This is why issues/discussions regarding mariuana are kind of grey. One side tries to convince you “No, weed is a drug and should be banned all over the damn world!” while the other side tries to say “No, weed is great and should be everywhere”. None of them are really right… or wrong for that matter. Educate yourself on this, read everything you can and then make up your own damn mind on social issues. That also means that you should not force anyone onto your side of it all, instead just offer the person the freedom of choice to decide on their own. Education on things so people can choose all on their own is key, guys! In other words, if someone tries to say that they’re right and any other argument is wrong:
So that’s kind of what I learned from this movie. Not gonna lie, when I went into it I didn’t really expect to actually learn anything. And even if you don’t wanna learn anything from it, no need to worry. This is overall a great movie with some of the most clever, dark, and funny comedy that I have ever witnessed. Jason Reitman did a fantastic job when he directed this movie, and all the actors are great too. If I can be honest, I think they should show this movie in rhetoric classes if they aren’t already. Seriously, the students could really learn a thing or two from this movie.
I hope you all learned something today. And if you didn’t, then go watch the fucking movie and start learning stuff from the hilarious satire. Also, big thanks to Kristina and Ruth for giving me this opportunity, I had a great time with this (mainly because it gave me a reason to re-watch this movie)! Go check out their shit, guys… it’s pretty great.
Have a good one! And remember:
15 thoughts on “Things I l Learned from the Movies Blogathon: Thank You for Smoking”
A fascinating lesson there, excellent post!
I think I would love this film. I can imagine Aaron Eckhart is fabulous is in the role. It sounds amusing but also thought-provoking. Plus, you can’t go wrong with life lessons about arguments and choices.
Thanks so much for joining the blogathon! I was really looking forward to your post and it was totally worth the wait!
Eckhart is pretty great in the role, and you can tell that he had a lot of fun playing the character. And big thanks to you and your co-host for letting me join, because it was fun doing this. Also, thank you for (smoking) the kind words.
I’m convinced. I’ve thought about catching this movie for a while now, but haven’t gotten around to it.
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I enjoyed the movie, and liked the book even better!
Good choice, and so true, your comparison to internet debate, nice look at the way some people corner you into their opinion! Thanks for joining us!
And people say that movies teach us nothing? This is proof that it does.
We can all learn a lot from the movies.
Indeed we can.
They are a wealth of knowledge for us all to discover.
This is, hands-down, one of my favorite movies ever. The acting, and dialog, are both amazing. I respectfully disagree with Jay, and will instead say that this movie is one of the few where the movie outclassed the book from which it came. And a lawyer buddy if mine, re: your rhetoric question, said that the first scene — the Sally Jessie Raphael one — was indeed shown in a class of his.
Just so darn good.