Philip Merivale

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Mr. And Mrs. Smith (1941) Review


Weak
It's unusual -- unique, even -- for a director's "big departure" to be a screwball comedy. And here it is: A disastrously ill-advised bickering couple's comedy from none other than Alfred Hitchcock.

Mr. and Mrs. Smith offers a potentially rich setup: Married couple discovers there vows weren't quite legal, and the wife (Carole Lombard) decides she prefers it that way, sending husband (Robert Montgomery) into a tizzy. The usual setups follow: Montgomery checks into his men's club and stalks his "wife," who immediately begins dating a series of men.

Continue reading: Mr. And Mrs. Smith (1941) Review

The Stranger Review


Excellent
Largely unsung, this Orson Welles movie is one of his most straightforward, yet still one of his greats -- and reportedly his only film to turn a profit on its original theatrical release. Welles also stars as a Nazi war criminal now living under a new identity on Connecticut... until the tribunal catches up with him. The architect of the genocide then quickly reverts to his old ways. Not a lot of surprise -- except for some rare casting of Edward G. Robinson as the good guy.
Philip Merivale

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