Resolutions 2016 | 5 Short Films to Help You Quit Smoking


Nicotine is a hell of a drug.

Picking up a smoking habit typically makes you feel ill and requires a certain resolve (I remember powering through my first cigarettes, desperate for cool points and green in the face), while quitting a smoking habit typically makes you feel ill (with withdrawal symptoms ranging from headaches, fatigue, anxiety and impulses to behead innocent bystanders) and requires colossal resolve.

Between the two, the experience of smoking is a type of tormenting, stinking hell, punctuated by some highlights (cigarettes and booze! cigarettes after a five course meal!) and many, many lowlights (smoking first thing in the morning after a night of partying, accidentally drinking the beer you decided to turn into an ashtray, rolling butts, globally napalming your health.)

So if you’ve decided to quit smoking this year (bravo), turbocharge your willpower with these 5 short films (most of them fairly hilarious and non-preachy) about the perils that lie in the lap of nicotine addiction.

The Drag

The Drag, Carlos Marchiori, provided by the National Film Board of Canada

Funny and brilliantly animated in popping 60s modernist style, this short traces one man’s tango with cigarettes from teenage angst to lung cancer scare. An absolute must-watch, even if you’re smart enough never to have lit up (or have no desire to quit.)

Ashes of Doom

Ashes of Doom , Don Arioli & Grant Munro, provided by the National Film Board of Canada

This 2-minute gem will convince you the Department of National Health should really get back into making campy vampire videos. Just incredible.


Mouseology, Bretislav Pojar, provided by the National Film Board of Canada

Addiction has been defined as compulsive behaviour that doesn’t support your greatness. Watch a little mouse explain it to you in this eerily accurate short. Warning: contains somewhat disturbing anatomical drawings. (Seriously, those sausage lungs are horrid.)

King Size

King Size, Kaj Pindal, provided by the National Film Board of Canada

Join a young blonde boy to the kingdom of King Size, where “no smoking” is forbidden. A silly and ironic tale by Kaj Pindal, the animator behind Peep and the Big Wide World.

The Purple Hat

Purple Hat, Lynn Smith, provided by the National Film Board of Canada

Watch a smoker elaborate the most ridiculous excuses to keep smoking in this very short animation that illustrates how nicotine makes you believe you absolutely need to line up this or that scenario to even attempt quitting.

Good luck!