Insite Atlanta – Addiction Incorporated Review

March 9, 2012 : By Steve Warren

If you liked The Insider and The Informant, complete the trifecta with an equally dramatic documentary about another real-life whistleblower. Victor DeNoble, who looks like Dennis Farina, was hired by Philip Morris to alter the nicotine in their cigarettes to make it cause fewer heart attacks… oh, and while you’re at it, could you make it more addictive? Experimenting on lab rats he achieved both aims and was about to publish a paper and address a convention about it in 1983 when the company’s lawyers pulled the plug and had him fired. A confidentiality agreement he signed kept DeNoble quiet for over a decade. In 1994, while the FDA was investigating the tobacco industry, ABC News ran an exposé accusing Philip Morris of intentionally selling what’s technically a drug. The CEOs of seven tobacco companies told a congressional subcommittee under oath they didn’t know nicotine was addictive, but Philip Morris was pressured into allowing DeNoble to testify. It’s all here – the leaked documents, the politicians in the pocket of the guilty corporations, the legal strategies on both sides and the hero who spills the beans. The ultimate settlement and the legal action it spawned may be confusing but the science, law, politics and public relations involved are explained thoroughly without talking down to viewers. Anyone who lights up after watching Addiction Incorporated should be put on suicide watch. *** ½

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