When Mr & Mrs Smith was released back in 2005, there was one word that featured in virtually every contemporary review – chemistry. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie were considered to be two of the hottest actors in Hollywood at the time in every respect, so putting them together was a recipe for movie magic.
That magic delivered beyond producers’ wildest dreams when Pitt and Jolie’s on-set heat was not only evident onscreen, but it also spilled over into their personal lives. Even before shooting ended, tabloid interest about their rumoured relationship had reached such a fever pitch that paparazzi journalists were actively interrupting the shooting, forcing them to hire additional security. You can’t buy publicity like that.
The rest is history. Brangelina became an item, Jennifer Aniston became the world’s most famous wronged woman and the public interest carried Mr & Mrs Smith to over $400 million worldwide.
Outside that very specific pop culture moment, does Mr & Mrs Smith still hold up? Even at the time the reviews were decidedly mixed for the film itself. The chemistry is undeniable, but the plot is both needlessly convoluted and also curiously half-formed. There’s a clear air of a vanity project – Pitt and Jolie are in virtually every frame, and there’s no room for interesting side-characters or even a clearly defined villain. The smouldering looks and athletic fight scenes are certainly the key selling point, but somewhere around the hour mark you start to realise that there’s not much going on in between those scenes.
On this week’s podcast we take a look back at Mr & Mrs Smith and discuss whether or not it’s stood the test of time. Along the way we highlight some of our most memorable moments, including bizarre glamour shots, agencies that make no sense and why nobody in these kinds of movies ever even tries for a head shot.
Along the way we also brainstorm some drinking games, check in with our listeners and pitch sequels to cash in on the inevitable next phase of the tabloid story – the Brangelina divorce.
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Next week, we’re flipping back to the 1940s for the next instalment of my ill-fated attempt to foist a bit of culture on my co-host. Until then, happy listening and remember – visit your spouse at work!