Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Overlooked Movies: Mr. and Mrs. Smith

No, not the Mr. and Mrs. Smith starring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.  This is the comedy starring Robert Montgomery and Carole Lombard, directed by Alfred Hitchcock.  Yes, Alfred Hitchcock.

Mr. and Mrs. Smith discover that they aren't really married.  I think I saw an episode of The Dick Van Dyke Show that had the same idea, but it was handled very differently.  Mr. and Mrs. Smith feud all the time, and it just happens that the day before they find out about the marriage, Ann (the Mrs.) asks David (the Mr.) if  he would marry her again if given the chance.  He says no.  This was, as you might have guessed already, the wrong answer.

You have to know going in that everything that happens after that depends on one person acting really illogically, and that person is Lombard.  It's kind of tough to like her and put up with it, but she almost pulls it off, being Lombard.  Robert Montgomery is very funny and gets a lot of the laughs, such as they are.  Of course you know all along how it will end.

I like the "Not suitable for general exhibition" warning label.  The double entendres and mild sex jokes wouldn't raise an eyebrow on a children's show today.

I was amused by the movie, but I didn't laugh out loud.  Montgomery has a good scene with a cat in a restaurant that almost did the trick, though.


Deb said...

Also a plot on "Gilligan's Island" where the Howells discover their marriage is also invalid.

/SPOILER: The Skipper, using his maritime authority, (re)marries them.

Jeff Meyerson said...

One of the few Hitchcock movies I haven't seen. I like Lombard, as a rule.

Unknown said...

I watched this on a DVD I had (and didn't know I had) a couple of months ago, and then it turned up on TCM the other day. Interesting movie, but it didn't work well for me.

Stephen B. said...

Probably Mr And Mrs Smith is not a classic, but I saw it twice a while back and it was passable. The only OTHER comedy Hitchcock ever made was probably The Trouble With Harry, or so I read, but MRS SMITH is slightly better (and much earlier made).

Carol Lombard was lost to fandom very early, and the Hitchcocks were good friend and it was said they were crushed when it happened many years back.

S.B. said...

THE AWFUL TRUTH is a film with Irene Dunne, and the banter and story is about a couple who want to try and separate and then go through with a divorce [spoiler!

spoiler! They don't break up]. It was made several years before this and somehow they are based on similer "ideas" of story.