Smoking is bad for you. Every child knows this. You're told so from all kinds of different sides. Especially doctors share this point of view. At every doctor's visit – no matter which specialisation – you are advised to quit smoking.
There are many good intentioned advises but you are left alone without actual medical help.
Society condones smoking for the most part and the Austrian government does it's best to keep you smoking. I allege them to facilitate this bad habit because it is the "cheaper" way than to come up with alternatives.
The reasons to do so are much more complex than "we", the people, can even imagine.
We have to get away from tobacco. This is the WHO's recommendation and Austria and the European Union have to follow this lead. A binding treaty (FCTC) has been singed by the Austrian government in 2003.
That there is -in fact- a different way to handle this shows the example of Great Britain. Even though the British government shares the opinion that the consumption of tobacco should be limited resp. combated, they didn't sign the treaty but chose to take a different path. A path where the individual is accompanied on his journey to a smoke-free-life. This is done on political and social level. With continuously increasing tobacco taxes, smoking bans in public and well-invested "anti-smoke" campaigns they dug off the smoker's "freedom". A political course they follow since years. In preparation this cost a lot of public money but it already pays off now and in the long run. Simultaneously tomorrow's prospective non-smokers get supported with professional guidance and actively depicted methods to weaning off.
So how is it possible, and what are the benefits, to choose this alternative path?
One of those alternatives is the use of e-cigarettes. Evidentially, proven by scientific research, the e-cigarette is 95 percent less harmful than the classic tobacco cigarette. However there are almost as much different perceptions on this scientific research as there are nations worldwide. While there are some countries supporting a large-scale use of e-cigarettes, others subvert not just the use of e-cigarettes but deny it's benefits and position as alternative. Controlled by the media.
As a result the use of an e-cigarette is very often made much more difficult for an prospective smoking-dropout whereas in the UK people get almost actively invited to change their habits. In the model of the UK the position of the e-cigarette and it's potential gets massively supported whereas it's prevented in the rest op Europe. There is no common, European way on how to master this situation – the only thing the different nations agree on is that their people have to quit smoking tobacco. Other than in the UK, where mostly the so called "lower class" gets supported quitting, the rest of Europe 'forgets' about this (not insignificantly large) part of society.
Throughout the last years here and there a subculture is formed around the less harmful e-cigarette. An independent, homogeneous and open society which not only cares for their self-determination but defined this 'alternative' to their lifestyle.
With this film we are aiming to point out and scrutinize the biggest differences in health care systems and political motives. The central point of this research shouldn't be which ideology may be the right one but to underline that there are different approaches. So what is possible and primarily what is necessary to help someone on his way to a healthier life.
The protagonist Martin will be joined on his way out from his 'addiction'. Besides his personal experiences he follows his search on the 'truth', which lies somewhere in the middle...or not?