Hoping for positive publicity, a tobacco company offers $25 million to any American town that quits smoking for 30 days. Amidst a media frenzy, Eagle Rock, Iowa accepts the challenge while the company's PR man tries to sabotage the effort.
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Reverend Brooks leads the town in a contest to stop smoking for a month, But some tobacco executives don't want them to win, and try everything they can to make them smoke. If townspeople don't go nuts from wanting a cigarette, or kill each other from irritation and frustration, they will win a huge prize.Written by
Brian W Martz <B.Martz@Genie.com>
When Amos starts his no smoking patrol he is located on a gravel road leading into town. Why didn't they ever show any other roads leading into town with the no smoking patrol on them if they were trying prevent tobacco products from entering Eagle Rock? See more »
[Holding a pistol at Wren]
Don't you move, now. With my palsy, you're in enough trouble just standing there.
Odie, what are you doing? Give me my gun!
But he's a Communist! Look at them cigarettes!
I was just trying to explain to the, the old lady here, this car's a rental.
Sure. And I'm an unwed mother.
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Cold Turkey is a sleeper hit that is well worth a watch, especially in this era of anti-tobacco hysteria. The cast list may seem second-rate, but that's part of the pleasure -- seeing some big-names-to-be for the 70s and 80s in this early 70s picture delivering solid performances that will keep you laughing.
Cold Turkey takes a humerous look at the addage "Be careful what you ask for...", especially as we see the ending shots of the film. Good natured Van Dyke fits his preacher's garb perfectly, throwing a curve as he makes a bold move of empathy with his fellow townspeople. The ever-cunning Newhart is in his best form ever, and Tom Poston's few lines are enough to keep you laughing for days.
Overall we see two sides of human nature: 1, when people try to stop smoking for 30 days... and how their relationships degrade; and 2, when big media comes to small town America (complete with Brinkley and Concrite knockoffs) and the impact on rural life (and strife, given the circumstances) -- especially in church services.
This is a must rental, a pilgrimage should be made to Eagle Rock every five years or so. It is a fun film, funny, unpredictable and surprisingly relevant. It's amazing to look back and see how much has changed and yet how much has not.
SHOULD'VE BEEN IN AFI'S TOP 100 COMEDY MOVIES!!!
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