Friday, 18 January 2013

Smoking increases in Movies


Smoking is increasing in movies (also in TV). A report last year showed movie scenes portraying smoking had increased thus reversing a 5 year trend. They seem shocked at this but surely anyone with a braincell could see it coming?

Movie makers have been handed the easiest way ever to portray a character as a bad ass, rebel, devil may care, etc. All they have to do is light up a cigarette. They then take this further by getting the character to light up where they shouldn't. Job done!

Take the film where the above pic is from. It's 'Killing Them Softly' starring Brad Pitt as a hitman. In one scene Pitt is in an expensive car driven by the guy that's hiring him. Pitt gets out a cigarette but the owner of the car asks him not to smoke in his car. Pitt glances at him, says nothing ... and then lights up his cigarette.

No dialogue is necessary, the act of simply lighting up the cigarette says it all!

l've noticed smoking used in many new films like this and l predict there will be a lot more to come. Expect more scenes where characters light up in places where smoking is banned. Expect scenes where  anyone who objects to the character smoking is humiliated or suffers violence. When will we get the first scene showing one of the Health Police trying to issue an on street fine and getting beat up or worse? It will come and l have no doubt about that.

Movies love to shock and now they've got such a ready made prop to do it with. No longer do you need guns or knives ... a cigarette more than does the job. Worse still for the anti-smoking zealots is that many of the characters are portrayed as 'cool' AND played by stars such as Pitt.

The anti-smokers have created their very own Frankenstein monster .... except unlike Shelley's monster, they can't kill it!

6 comments:

  1. I've noticed this too!

    Also, TV Series like Mad Men have smokers in every single scene...

    I can just imagine the anti-smokers squirming every time somebody sparks up!

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  2. Ben Kingsley in Sexy Beast. Classic!

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  3. In general smoking has been reduced/vanished from mainstream tv/movies.One 'trick' they do though is flashback to 60's - 70's where smoking was acceptable (xmen,mad men etc)

    Creatively speaking movies are hitting rock bottom and I do believe smoking has smth to do with it.Can you imagine nowadays movies like Fight Club or Pulp Fiction?

    I dont know whether smokers shown as bad guys is a good thing for us. Btw have you ever noticed that quite rarely a show will depict smokers puffing outside? I guess TobaccoControl doesnt wasnt to show its dark side of the moon..

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    Replies
    1. l can't argue with you about TV as l watch so little of it. l tend to get hold of mini-series like Boardwalk Empire, SOA, Game of Thrones etc. The first 2 there is smoking in abundance. First is period and next is bikers :)

      Films l've seen have depicted both good and bad guys/girls smoking but in truth all of them are rebels. And thats my point, smoking is the new rebellion. Works for me.

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  4. Smokers have always been the badasses in films because they are cool apparently http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/SmokingIsCool

    Antis are whiners, phobics, boring, puritans. That does not make good drama or reflect real life.

    Let's hope film-makers don't get bullied into submission like everyone else.

    It will lead to the death of film as it has led to the death of many other cultures including going to the pub

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  5. I would imagine that the point of the scene is that the driver is expecting the hitman to go and kill someone in cold blood on his behalf, and yet he is himself afraid of a whiff of tobacco smoke.
    There is plenty of smoking on the TV - lots of it, and the characters are by no means always the bad guys. Often, they are quasi-heroes, such as detectives in modern dramas. The worst offenders for political correctness by far are Ausie soaps like Neighbours (I don't watch it but herself does). In those soaps, NOBODY smokes - not even the worst of the baddies!
    Oh, and in the pubs, badies are allowed to drink alcohol (goodies drink fruit juices), but must always be pissed and trouble.

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