Monday, July 1, 2013

How Cool can Tobacco Make You?

Yesterday, my little brother and sister were badgering my buddy Ken about why he chews tobacco. After about the eighteenth question along the lines of, "Why do you do it if it doesn't taste good?," he finally answered, "I don't know."

But I know. People have been smoking and chewing tobacco for eons, and they've proved over and over that it's cool. Look:

You can't tell me that James Dean would look like nearly as much of a badass without the stog in his mouth.

Here are a few other movie stars that have seen cigarettes enhance their personas:

Brad Pitt in Fight Club and A River Runs Through It

We already know that Pitt stands atop the American pop culture pantheon, but these movies made me want to smoke. Like, "Screw cancer. Maybe I can be cool, too." At the end of A River Runs Through It, Pitt's character Paul is killed for his gambling debts, but the family takes comfort in the fact that nearly all the bones in his right hand are broken. At least Paul had gone down fighting. That scene just reafiirms the awesomeness we see as Paul smokes cigs and chugs whiskey throughout the movie.

Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's

What Brad Pitt does for guys smoking cigarettes is mirrored by Hepburn for females. She perfected the "sophisticated smoking lady" look.

Leonardo DiCaprio in Titanic

Leo is obviously the man, but Kate Winslet also has a memorable smoking scene in Titanic. She takes a long drag of a cigarette right before standing on her toes during the skell party in third class.

Mike Myers in Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

The Neighborhood Gang in The Sandlot


Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum in Independence Day

Because no list of Hollywood badasses would feel right without the 'Blum. Just remember:

John Wayne in pretty much all of his movies

Oh, FYI: This was obviously before he had a lung removed due to cancer in the 1960s. He paid the price, but sometimes that's the price you have to pay to maintain your reputation as the all-American tough guy.

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