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3.6 out of 5 stars
Mr. & Mrs. Smith [DVD] [1941] [2005]
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 26 February 2005
There is something quite disconcerting about watching a Hitchcock film, the man who has the reputation, rightly, as the best maker of suspense films ever; a man whose work has irrevocably changed how the world sees filmmaking as a whole through the suspense medium, and knowing also that one is watching a comedy.
Watching 'The Trouble With Harry' one gets a similar feeling and that film too, accompanying the comedy, however dated some of it can be at times, has a real sense of the macabre, a quite horrible darkness to the overall feeling of the film. The way in which the couple, (having spilt up, Mr. wants to get back together with his uninterested wife), and particularly him, treat each other, the constant dogging, spying and overalll attempt at malicious sabotage is quite disconcerting if also fairly funny.
There's no getting away from the fact that the film isn't a great. Though there are echoes in some of the symbolism, though some images bring others from greater films to mind, Vertigo, Psycho, still, like HItchcock's films as a whole from that era, we aren't treated to a wonderful cinemtaic experience but a good one, and, far more interestingly, we are shown, like most of Hitchcock's earlier and less successful film, the seeds of the future, those reminders, fleeting though they may be, of what comes out of this work and one can hardly fail to wonder at it.
Working with, shall we say, not the best screenplay ever made, the actors performances are all strong, as macabre as they needed to be, when they needed to be and likewise for the comedy. That is perhaps what gets the film through, the very decent balance between the seriousnees of the film and the comedy.
It is well worth the watching and, as with virtually all of his work, essential for any true Hitchcockians.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
First off you might note that this movie was made early in Hitchcock's American career as a favour to Carole Lombard. Poignant too, as Lombard was killed in a plane crash between this film's completion and its release.
It's odd Hitchcock fare, but fluff enough to keep you engaged. Mr and Mrs Smith are constantly at each other's throats, but with one condition -- they never leave the bedroom until their score has been settled.
But what do they do when they find that their marriage was not legal in the first place? Batten down the hatches, kids, this one's not pretty.
The virtues of this film are to be seen in Hitchcock's dealing with the married couple. There aren't that many married-couple stories in film, because all that lusting has been tamed. But Hitch has his own way of telling these tales. This film is in good company with earlier English attempts Rich & Strange, The Lady Vanishes and The Man Who Knew Too Much pitching themselves on the far side of the marriage boundary.
That said, this is a particularly lusty marriage, and of course when it is annulled, the lust goes mad. Only in different directions.
Worth checking out for the farce -- but don't approach it with your Hitchcock-snobbery head on.
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VINE VOICEon 26 February 2007
Mr. and Mrs. Smith (Robert Montgomery and Carole Lombard) have a marriage with many ups and downs. One day at the office Mr. Smith finds out that he is not legally married. Surprise Mrs. Smith finds out also and waits for Mr. Smith to propose the make it legal. Somehow he forgets to do this and drives her into the arms of his friend and partner.

Why won't the cat eat the soup?
How will all this turn out?

This formula was popular in the time the movie was made. This version is a tad more complex but still is necessary to suspend reality. We do get a good look at the 1939 World's Fair. Carole Lombard is not quite as noisy. Robert Montgomery is good at almost slapstick situations.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 4 January 2001
A gloriously acidic screwball comedy, with three astonishingly good lead performances. Probably my favourite Hitchcock, easily his most underrated.
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on 8 July 2015
This DVD is one of Alfred Hitchcocks more lighthearted films it is about a couple who have one rule iñ their marriàge if they have an argument neither of them can leave the bedroom until they have made it up.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 1 May 2006
Lots of people don't seem to like this film. Perhaps they were expecting something different from Hitchcock. However, I find it a brilliant comedy, and Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery are superb in this. This film isn't perfect, and it especially lags in the last half. Agreed that it is a departure from Hitchcock's normal style of film, but that makes it all the more better. Hitch made this film so he could work with Carole Lombard his favourite actress, and I think that it wasn't a half bad attempt. People, stop trying to view this as a Hitchcock masterpiece, just watch it as a hilarious screwball comedy!
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on 21 March 2015
Slightly slow rom-com, with one brilliant scene, where Robert Montgomery avoids night club humiliation.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 17 April 2009
I am a longtime fan of Mr Hitchcock and own most of his works on DVD but had shied away from this one as I generally detest the romantic/screwball comedy genres. I finally relented and purchased Mr & Mrs Smith. Picture and sound quality are comparable to other Hitch's of this vintage (fine/alright) but what a strange concoction the film is. I didn't hate it. Mr & Mrs Smith have a very strange relationship indeed. For its period the movie has an unusual darkness of mood and coldness of character in places - I guess these elements are the Hitchcock touch at work. Certainly not the froth and bubble lightweight fare I had imagined it would be. Not a film you'll want to watch often but if you're anything like me and something of a completest you may watch this every few years when you chronologically watch your way through the entire Hitch catalogue.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 22 May 2006
"Mr and Mrs Smith" is a tiresome 1940's cockamamie,screwball,etc. Hitchcock rom-com which doesn't quite work. It is not particularly funny or heart warming ,in fact it is just simply dull and boring , one thing that a Hitchcock film can rarely be accused of being. None of the characters are very likeable and the plot is somewhat far fetched and silly. If Jennifer Aniston was alive in the early 1940's , this is the sort of film she would be in. Don't know which latter day actor would star alongside her though ; perhaps someone like Kevin Bacon or Ben Stiller. The storyline is a bit farcical ; Mr Smith drops a big clanger by remarking to his wife over breakfast that , if he had to do it all again, he wouldn't have married her. A legal technicality concerning their marriage then gives Mr Smith the opportunity to do just that and this is the cue for a series of predictable and somewhat irksome series of events to occur. "Mr and Mrs Smith " is a very atypical Hitchcock film; only "The Trouble With Harry" from his oeuvre bears any resemblance to it and I didn't like that film either.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 21 April 2009
Unfortunately this UK DVD edition contains a mediocre print and no extras. Avoid this at all costs and instead get the US R1 Warner Bros edition which has a better print transfer, and contains the theatrical trailer and a making of documentary "Mr Hitchcock Meets The Smiths". At least it's good to see that Universal have ditched the appallingly bland cover art for their Hitchcock titles and gone back to their original design.
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