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Spielberg Favorites by M. E. Krueger


“Spielberg Favorites”


“The Smoking Critic”,

M. E. Krueger


Hopefully, the majority of movie fans scanning this offering are not afflicted by that most heinous and undeniably foul habit of smoking cigarettes, but alas, I am. Although I have tried to quit more times than Rocky Balboa has stepped into the boxing ring, I’m still a self-loathing tobacco junkie. My failures to conquer this appalling addiction along with the ever increasing anti-smoking legions have left me no alternative but to lead the life of a relative shut-in. So when a movie trailer or a superlative review entices me to leave the smoky confines of my home and sit in a darkened, no smoking theater, the film had better live up to its expectations. Anything less brings on painful withdrawal symptoms followed by less than flattering word of mouth.

For example, “Raiders of the Lost Arc” was so exhilarating, not once did I flash forward to seeing myself light up the minute my car door slammed shut in the parking lot. “Jaws”, although equally tension filled, left me yearning for a smoke just to settle my nerves before driving home across the bridge over what I was now convinced were troubled waters. I remember watching Dennis Weaver in “Duel” from my couch when I was just a social smoker. Looking back, I truly believe that film is what changed me from someone who smoked because it was cool, to a chain-smoking fool. Plus, to this day I’m still on the lookout for menacing semi trucks, and I’m even more vigilant about maintaining my radiator’s coolant level.

“ET” transported me to a time of innocence where smoking wasn’t even on my radar. Besides, it’s nearly impossible to inhale when you’re sobbing. “A.I.”, on the other hand, nearly brought me to tears upon realizing this movie was only half over when the evil smoking sensors in my brain kicked in. Even though my urge to partake of a quick puff or two was unrelenting during “Schindler’s List”, I bravely sacrificed that ever so satisfying smoke in honor of the subject matter.

I thoroughly enjoyed “Jurassic Park” as a non-smoker by convincing myself there were no cigarettes in the Jurassic period. Conversely, while viewing “The Terminal”, I convinced myself it would have been much better had the entire cast been smoking. After all, the title says it all

Mr. Spielberg has not only entertained me over the years, but his engaging work has added nearly a year to my lifespan in cumulative seven-minute segments. I’m headed to the theater today to see “Munich” and I’m counting on it being up to snuff. In case it’s not, I’m bringing snuff. I’ll let you know in my upcoming review. Until then, smoke ’em if you’ve got ’em.

An afterthought.

Since Indiana Jones didn’t smoke, why did he have that lighter in “The Last Crusade”?

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