Merchants of Death

Essay by bitterteaCollege, UndergraduateA-, March 2009

download word file, 5 pages 5.0

Downloaded 16 times

The common stereotypical image of a business person is a wealthy, perfectly dressed, briefcase in hand individual. Who would have thought that a business person can also be a mass murderer? Whether selling firearms to cigarettes, thousands of business persons can essentially be seen as this. Nevertheless, in spite of this brutal claim, a business person is no different than your typical worker. In Andrew Niccol's Lord of War and Jason Reitman's Thank You for Smoking, the average worker is effectively characterized as someone who places themselves in their interested industry and someone who utilizes their talents in order to support the ones they love. Even though Orlov and Naylor can fundamentally be viewed as "monsters", their interests and underlying reasons to continue their occupation is the same as any other worker.

People engage themselves in industries that they are interested in and are talented in. In Lord of War, when Orlov's wife, Ava Fontaine, was informed as to how her husband is able to fund their luxurious lifestyle, she suffers a crisis of morals and confronts her husband.

She says, "Yuri… I won't fail as a human being. Why don't you just stop? We have enough" (Niccol). Regardless of the clear traumatic expression, he simply whispers back, "Because I'm good at it" (Niccol). Clearly, Orlov is entirely aware of the high death toll his illegally trafficked guns cause; however, he continues his job because he is good at it. By simply talking back, his interest for this particular field is further epitomized. Even when he was disbanded from his immoral activities, he states, "Thank god there are still legal ways to exploit developing countries. The only problem with an honest buck is they're so hard to make - the margins are too low, too many...