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Film / Smoke Alarm: The Unfiltered Truth About Cigarettes

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Smoke Alarm: The Unfiltered Truth About Cigarettes is a 1996 HBO anti-smoking special aimed at kids and teens.

The special discusses why young people smoke and how tobacco companies target their youth. Smoke Alarm: The Unfiltered Truth About Cigarettes features a combination of live-action segments and animated shorts.


Smoke Alarm: The Unfiltered Truth About Cigarettes provides examples of:

  • Animate Body Parts: At the start, a pair of smoking lungs are shown talking. They appear later on as well.
  • Advertisement:
  • Gross-Out Show: Several of the goofier segments make smoking look as gross as possible.
  • Medium Blending: It's a mix of live-action and animated segments.
  • Really 17 Years Old: In one of the segments, underage teens are asked to buy cigarettes. A 14-year-old mentions she either says she left her ID at home or she says she's 22.
  • Scare 'em Straight: There's a bit of this, such as when a chewing tobacco user discusses how he got cancer from it and how it affected his health (including losing his jaw).
  • Visual Pun: A fictional cigarette company creates a new mascot called "Frank Mule" to target young consumers. It's repeatedly mentioned that he's aimed at "moronic" customers. Frank Mule is a literal ass.

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