Thursday 14 June 2018

Movie Review: Mr. And Mrs. Smith (2005)

A comedy action thriller, Mr. And Mrs. Smith enjoys tremendous chemistry between its two stars, a high-energy attitude, and a sharp script.

John Smith (Brad Pitt) and Jane Smith (Angelina Jolie) are a married couple. Both are assassins-for-hire and they keep their profession hidden from each other. Five or six years into the marriage, the layering of secrets is straining their relationship. Things get worse when they are independently tasked to kill the same target, and then instructed to take each other out.

Jane Smith: [after firing three shots through a wall at John] Still alive, baby?

The premise cannot be any simpler, and yet director Doug Liman, working from a Simon Kinberg script, creates an exceptionally enjoyable movie out of it. Mr. And Mrs. Smith is a tongue-in-cheek joyride through the world of professional assassins and domesticity, and indeed the entire film works as a commentary on the doldrums that beset a marriage and how to overcome them.

John Smith: [over the car phone, trying to beat Jane home] That's the second time you've tried to kill me today.
Jane Smith: [over her speakerphone, trying to beat John home] Oh, come on, it was just a little bomb.

At two hours long the film does threaten to overstay its welcome, but Liman methodically goes about organizing the story into three parts. The introduction sets up the premise and the business of secret professional killing hidden from a wobbly marriage. The middle third is all about Mr. and Mrs. Smith gunning for each other. The final segment has them sorting out their issues and driving towards a raucous conclusion.

John Smith: We have an unusual problem here, Jane. You obviously want me dead, and I'm less and less concerned for your well-being.

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie ignite Mr. And Mrs. Smith with ferocious chemistry. From their opening meeting in Bogota to the final beautifully choreographed wild shootout, Pitt and Smith share a smooth rapport, whether exchanging edgy barbs, trading bullets, or enjoying sizzling sex. The stellar supporting cast includes Vince Vaughn, Kerry Washington, Adam Brody, Keith David and Michelle Monaghan, but none of them get more than a few token scenes: this is very much the Pitt and Jolie show.

John Smith: [after firing a rocket launcher] We should so not be allowed to buy these.

The action scenes are over-the-top, elegantly directed, and spiced with a steady stream of verbal sparring. Touches of humour are applied in just the right doses, serving as reminders that the film does not take itself too seriously.

John Smith: [after Jane checks his crotch for a weapon] That's all John, sweetheart.

It’s always better for a couple to cooperate towards a common purpose. For Mr. And Mrs. Smith, killing is their business, and business is better together.

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  1. I have always wanted to watch this movie because of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. Despite the fact that it is not a recent film, I have never viewed it. I don’t know why I thought it was a romcom. It definitely seems funny!

    1. It has romance, it has comedy, but it is definitely not a romantic comedy! This film probably captures Pitt and Jolie at their charisma peak.

    2. In that case, I must absolutely watch it this weekend!


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