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Press Release Warner Archive Collection Press Release: Mr. & Mrs. Smith (1941) (Blu-ray) (1 Viewer)

Ronald Epstein

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Coming to Blu-ray on June 25th from the Warner Archive Collection!
New 2024 1080p HD master from 4K scan of best nitrate preservation elements.

MR. & MRS. SMITH (1941)
BD-50
87 Minutes
B&W
16x9 1.37:1 with side mattes
DTS-HD MA 2.0
English SDH
Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

SPECIAL FEATURES: Featurette: “Mr. Hitchcock Meets the Smiths”, Classic cartoons: THE CAT’S TALE and SPORTS CHUMPIONS ; Two Audio only radio broadcasts: Lux Radio Theater broadcast with Carole Lombard and Bob Hope, and Screen Guild Players broadcast with Errol Flynn and Lana Turner. Original Theatrical Trailer

“If you had it to do all over again, would you have married me?” Yes, gentlemen, there is a right answer. That’s something David Smith learns the hard way when his bubbly and beautiful wife Ann queries him over breakfast.
Also right are radiant Carole Lombard and easygoing Robert Montgomery as the stars of this breezy Alfred Hitchcock comedy. For three years, the Smiths have been blissed but battling. When a technicality voids their union, Mr. misses Mrs., orbiting the tale into the delightful confection of the screwball genre. From a script by Academy Award® winner Norman Krasna, Hitchcock made his change-of-pace foray into the all-out humor memorable. “Here again are his unmistakable touches” Look Magazine declared. “The net effect is the same, too: another Alfred Hitchcock hit.”
 

Timothy E

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This will be a great month for me with the Warner Archive. I have waited a long time for this one, as well as several of the other releases announced today.
 

SwatDB

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And another Hitchcock film bites the dust on Blu-ray. Thank you very much Mr. Feltenstein :)
 
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Patrick McCart

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If I'm not mistaken, this is the last of the Warner-controlled Hitchcock titles to make the leap to Blu-ray.
And the last of his American films to make the jump. Spellbound should be coming from Criterion eventually, though the Kino Lorber Blu-rays for Lifeboat and The Paradine Case recently went out of print (Thanks, Disney).

Is this up to the same calibre as his bigger films like Rear Window and Vertigo? No, but it's a fun little comedy and Carole Lombard is lovely as always.
 

Robert Harris

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And the last of his American films to make the jump. Spellbound should be coming from Criterion eventually, though the Kino Lorber Blu-rays for Lifeboat and The Paradine Case recently went out of print (Thanks, Disney).

Is this up to the same calibre as his bigger films like Rear Window and Vertigo? No, but it's a fun little comedy and Carole Lombard is lovely as always.
Her penultimate performance.
 

lark144

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mark gross
Is it actually a screwball comedy, though? What about the movie qualifies it as one?
From my perspective, it's more a comedy of remarriage, along with films such as THE AWFUL TRUTH, HIS GIRL FRIDAY, THE PHILADELPHIA STORY & MY FAVORITE WIFE. The husband & wife either divorce or discover, as in MR AND MRS SMITH, their marriage is invalid, decide to play the field but keep running into each other.
 

Will Krupp

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From my perspective, it's more a comedy of remarriage, along with films such as THE AWFUL TRUTH, HIS GIRL FRIDAY, THE PHILADELPHIA STORY & MY FAVORITE WIFE. The husband & wife either divorce or discover, as in MR AND MRS SMITH, their marriage is invalid, decide to play the field but keep running into each other.
I've seen all of these movies listed examples online of "screwball comedies" and The Awful Truth is the only one that comes close, in my opinion, to having any of the hallmarks. I think the definition of screwball comedy has been given a large dose of revisionism to include any romantic comedy in which the characters talk fast. Just my two cents.
 

Robert Crawford

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I've seen all of these movies listed examples online of "screwball comedies" and The Awful Truth is the only one that comes close, in my opinion, to having any of the hallmarks. I think the definition of screwball comedy has been given a large dose of revisionism to include any romantic comedy in which the characters talk fast. Just my two cents.
What is your definition of a screwball comedy?
 

Will Krupp

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What is your definition of a screwball comedy?

Well, screwball comedy, like its namesake the screwball pitch, has traditionally been defined as a farce that spins in an unexpected way. The screwball comedy parodies traditional romantic comedies and usually casts the female protagonist as the aggressor, satirizes class (almost always at the expense of the upper classes), and has its characters acting in ludicrous (almost bordering on absurdist) ways. Talking fast is part of it, but not the sole criteria.

I've never in my life seen either The Philadelphia Story, or Holiday as examples of screwball yet, in modern essays, they're almost always given as examples of it. Both of them, for example, take their the love stories far too seriously to qualify, in my opinion.

To my mind, one of the best examples of a "late" screwball comedy, in it's purest sense, is probably The Palm Beach Story from 1942. It works so well because Preston Sturges is not only parodying romantic comedies but is pretty much parodying the genre of the screwball comedy itself. It's a parody of a parody and that's why it's so delightfully bananas.

That's all I got!
 

Robert Crawford

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Well, screwball comedy, like its namesake the screwball pitch, has traditionally been defined as a farce that spins in an unexpected way. The screwball comedy parodies traditional romantic comedies and usually casts the female protagonist as the aggressor, satirizes class (almost always at the expense of the upper classes), and has its characters acting in ludicrous (almost bordering on absurdist) ways. Talking fast is part of it, but not the sole criteria.

I've never in my life seen either The Philadelphia Story, or Holiday as examples of screwball yet, in modern essays, they're almost always given as examples of it. Both of them, for example, take their the love stories far too seriously to qualify, in my opinion.

To my mind, one of the best examples of a "late" screwball comedy, in it's purest sense, is probably The Palm Beach Story from 1942. It works so well because Preston Sturges is not only parodying romantic comedies but is pretty much parodying the genre of the screwball comedy itself. It's a parody of a parody and that's why it's so delightfully bananas.

That's all I got!
Thank you for your clarification. I don't totally agree with it, but that's film opinion for you.
 

lark144

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mark gross
I've seen all of these movies listed examples online of "screwball comedies" and The Awful Truth is the only one that comes close, in my opinion, to having any of the hallmarks. I think the definition of screwball comedy has been given a large dose of revisionism to include any romantic comedy in which the characters talk fast. Just my two cents.
Will, I think you may have been misunderstanding me. MR & MRS SMITH is not a screwball comedy, nor the others I referenced. According to my old film prof Jim Harvey, they're "comedies of re-marriage". Screwball, as you state, are more farces, like BRINGING UP BABY or NOTHING SACRED. These are Romantic comedies in which married couples get back together. There's really no "screwball" element at all. It's interesting you bring up PALM BEACH STORY, in which the main story line is a comedy of re-marriage, fused with "screwball elements" brought by secondary characters.
 

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