Mr & Mrs Smith is the latest high-octance-action-romance fare from over the pond, staring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie as the eponymous couple, married for 5 (or 6) years and, unbeknownst to each other, each one of the world’s top assassins.
This is a rather unlikely premise, and the film doesn’t really get going until they realise this fact, and are given each other as targets to take out. They proceed to utterly destroy their house, before realising that seriously beating each other up is assassin foreplay…
Thereafter it’s a by-the-numbers shoot ’em up really. I found Mrs Smith to be a very unsympathetic character, only once showing an approximation of a human side in a rather contrived fish-out-of water scenario when handed a baby. Mr Smith was more convincing as a character, but still was about as deep as the screen the film was projected on. And a remarkable suspension of disbelief was required on several occasions as we were required to swallow absurd comic book violence – case in point is when a 6″ kitchen knife gets embedded to the hilt in Mr Smith’s thigh by an off-aim Mrs Smith during the climatic shoot-out – result, the stocial Mr Smith pulls it out, says “We’ll talk about this later”, and walks on as if nothing’s happened.
But that does bring me nicely on to the film’s strongest point, which is it’s humour. Once you accept the idea that this married couple have basically said nothing true to each other for the whole time they’ve known each other, the unpicking of these lies is actually quite amusing. For instance, in the middle of a rather unbelievable car chase,
Mrs Smith: I’m an orphan. My parent’s died when I was 5.
Mr Smith (pause): So who were those people at our wedding?
Mrs Smith: Paid actors
Mr Smith: Arrgg – I said I’d seen your Father on Fantasy Island
Then at some point later:
Mr Smith: I can’t believe I took my real parents to our wedding.
If that sort of humour tickles you, you’d probably enjoy the film. If not, it’s not really worth going to see.. Catch it on the telly with some friends.
Seen at Ster Century, Leeds