Mr and Mrs Smith is a forgettable Hitchcock. I know this because I’d forgotten I’d seen it moderately recently. It’s possibly not just a forgettable Hitchcock but forgettable as a Hitchcock.
The opening sequence is a hoot and sets up the relationship between Mr and Mrs Smith perfectly. Carole Lombard is wondeful here and in most of the rest of the film. And when the film loses its way - which it does so completely in the last third - at least there is Carole! Robert Montgomery is also pretty good for most of the film and Jack Carson is fun in his little role. The rest of the cast are forgettable.
It’s all pretty standard screwball fare, and like all screwballs it probably helps not to think too hard about things and just let the set-peices do their stuff. The opneing sequence; the first date; Ann and Jeff getting stuck on the parachute ride.
But then, the final third and the film becomes unbearable and with that it opens up the holes in the story so they’re harder to turn a blind eye to. And then I start forgetting again - my memories of the last third of the film are mostly just wishing it would end.
Hopefully I’ll remember how forgettable this is and not bother to watch it again.
Hitchcock Zone: Mr and Mrs Smith (1941)