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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Thank You for Smoking

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Trenchant black comedy about tobacco industry lobbyist (a perfectly cast Aaron Eckhart) who, under the approving eye of his boss (Robert Duvall), will stop at nothing to promote cigarette smoking, as he manipulates talk show hosts (Joan Lunden and Dennis Miller), an anti-smoking Vermont senator (William H. Macy), a Hollywood agent (Rob Lowe), and an investigative reporter (Katie Holmes), while wondering about the effect of his questionable tactics on his young son. Writer-director Jason Reitman's highly amusing and well-acted adaptation of Christopher Buckley's novel sustains its satiric stance without losing sight of the grave issues at hand. Much rough and crude language and expressions, a couple of sexual encounters with no nudity and sexual banter, an irreligious remark. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L -- limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

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Augustine of Hippo: A Christian at 33, a priest at 36, a bishop at 41: Many people are familiar with the biographical sketch of Augustine of Hippo, sinner turned saint. But really to get to know the man is a rewarding experience. 
<p>There quickly surfaces the intensity with which he lived his life, whether his path led away from or toward God. The tears of his mother (August 27), the instructions of Ambrose (December 7) and, most of all, God himself speaking to him in the Scriptures redirected Augustine’s love of life to a life of love. </p><p>Having been so deeply immersed in creature-pride of life in his early days and having drunk deeply of its bitter dregs, it is not surprising that Augustine should have turned, with a holy fierceness, against the many demon-thrusts rampant in his day. His times were truly decadent—politically, socially, morally. He was both feared and loved, like the Master. The perennial criticism leveled against him: a fundamental rigorism. </p><p>In his day, he providentially fulfilled the office of prophet. Like Jeremiah and other greats, he was hard-pressed but could not keep quiet. “I say to myself, I will not mention him,/I will speak in his name no more./But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart,/imprisoned in my bones;/I grow weary holding it in,/I cannot endure it” (Jeremiah 20:9).</p> American Catholic Blog Lord, please fill my heart and soul with the confidence that you will always provide what I need, when I need it, and let me be obedient to you.

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