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Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005)

Directed by:

Doug Liman

Rating: 6/10

Running Time: 120 minutes

US Certificate: PG-13 UK Certificate: 15

Country: United States

Brad and Ange, Hollywood’s most sickeningly photogenic bags of eye-candy, come together on screen at last in ‘Mr & Mrs Smith’ – the action-packed spy-romp during the filming of which they didn’t start rumpy-pumpying for real, honest.

Not to be confused with Alfred Hitchcock’s 1941 rom-com of the same name (the only thing the two flicks have in common is their title), this noisy tale of a particularly troubled marriage has Mr Pitt and Ms Jolie as a couple who clearly don’t buy into the idea of sharing absolutely everything with one another. You see, when Mr Smith leaves the house each morning, supposedly heading for his job as a big-money contractor, he’s actually off to work as a secret agent. And, when Mrs Smith claims to be heading for her job on Wall Street, she’s actually off to work as a – erm – secret agent. You can already see where a conflict of interests might crop up somewhere along the line.

After taking just a little too long to get down to the nitty-gritty and have them each discover their other half’s secret, the pair go on to banter and quip their way through countless explosions, punch-ups and shoot-outs. Sometimes both are trying to kill the same target, and at other times they’re simply trying to kill each other, but either way the body count goes through the roof as Mr and Mrs Smith come to realise there might be quite a bit more passion in their marriage than they’d thought.

It’s a messy story, never quite coming together as well as helmsman Doug Liman would probably have liked. Huge chunks of the plot are never properly explained, the direction doesn’t move things along quickly enough and – regardless of how firmly its tongue is pressed against its cheek – I couldn’t help but feel a little uncomfortable with watching Mister beat the living snot out of Missus in an extended scene of domestic violence.

Still, the flick seems certain to be a success, and that’s primarily down to the undeniable pulling power of the two leads. The chemistry between the pair is plain for all to see, and it’s primarily thanks to their confidence and enthusiasm for the project (and, perhaps, for each other) that it just about works.

It's Got: A key character wearing a ‘Fight Club’ t-shirt – but never mentioning Mr Smith’s uncanny resemblance to one of that movie’s lead characters. Then again, I suppose the first rule of wearing a ‘Fight Club’ t-shirt is that you never talk about the ‘Fight Club’ t-shirt.

It Needs: To give supporting player Vince Vaughn a little more to do. The poor fellow looks more than a little bored.

Alternatives:

True Lies

Summary

Married life isn’t quite the Pitts in this jumbled-but-fun hubby and wife duel.

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