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Daily Dose #11: Thought I'd Left (Opening Scene of Mr. and Mrs. Smith)


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#21 shamus46

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 07:30 PM

1. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence?  The roving shot of the room.  All the dishes and unkempt look.  They are upper class with servants and have routinely stayed at home for days.

 

2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not?   I agree.  The music, with the flute, gives a light-heartedness to the scene and the panning shot leading up to the close-ups.  The maid and cook discuss the couples actions and the office calls to see what is going on.  This helps describes the characters and gives background.

 

3What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not?  I think they are well suited for each other...as well as Lombard and Jack Benny is.  Lombard has a fun ability to capture the scene with her comedic talents, and Montgomery is able to play goofy too.

 

Over-all, I've always liked this movie, even before I learned Hitchcock directed it.

 

 



#22 lovebirding54

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 02:09 PM

The first few minutes are totally visual without dialogue. Then I noticed another blonde in the lead. And the upper-class couple is obvious by the decor and the fact he hasn't been to work and they have a household staff. These minor characters again give us a lot of information about the lead characters. And also again, the music is lively and adds to scene letting us know there is not a villain or we should be afraid of what is next.

 

The opening of Mr. And Mrs. Smith is not the typical opening in that the music stays light and we do not get a sense of dread. There are no crowds or intrigue. They appear not to be in any danger. But it is Hitchcock in that we get a lot of information in the first scene from the main characters and the secondary characters. He pans the scene with gives us information too. We know they do this often, we know they are wealthy, we know they cannot leave the room until their conflict is resolved and that he is a lawyer. Hitchcock close ups, the music, and the background information is there.

 


I think the chemistry is there between Lombard and Montgomery.   



#23 iceiceblondie

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 08:17 PM

I did see some Hitchcock touches, the opening with several characters, music matching the scene, POV shots. Didn't really like Robert Montgomery in this role for some reason. I don't know if he's a good fit for Carole Lombard's character.



#24 GeeWiz

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 05:21 PM

1. Hitchcock "touches" in this opening sequence?

 

 Lilting music helps create a musical rhythm. There are POV dolly shots, (his -- scanning the room in disarray, focus on the cards, dirty dishes, etc.) and hers--push-in on Carole Lombard in the bed. The couple seems to have been cooped in the room for several days.  The set also reveals they are wealthy. 

 

2. Typical "Hitchcock opening"?

 

Yes, there are clear moments from prior films. Plenty fo secondary characters, camera angles that showcase the protagonists, musical motif. Establishing incidents.

 

 

3. What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery?

 

She is fabulous but I didn't like him initially...though he plays the part well. Like his slamming the door, pretending to have left the room. Then quickly revealing himself (wanting to make up without all the rules from previous fights). 

 

 

 



#25 Jennifer Anne

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Posted 22 July 2017 - 01:54 PM

1. What stood out the most to me was the playfulness with which Hitchcock keeps the audience guessing as to what is going on in the scene. it reminded me of Downhill, after Ivor Novello's character leaves home and begins working. Hitchcock introduces us to Novello's new profession through a series of close-up shots (Is he at a party? Is he a waiter?) followed by a pan out to a wider shot revealing him to be an actor playing a waiter on stage. Similarly, In Mr. and Mrs. Smith, we begin with a close-up of dirty dishes (Are they leftovers from a party? A banquet?). As the camera pans around the room giving us clues to what may or may not be taking place, it becomes obvious that they have been holed up in this room for longer than one night.

2. I guess I would have to disagree. In comparison to the other openings we have seen in this class, Mr. and Mrs. Smith does not have a dynamic pace or take place in a crowded public setting. It does retain an emphasis on seeing versus being seen: Lombard's eye peeks out from under her blanket; Montgomery stares at her from behind the sofa; Montgomery refuses to open the door to his office assistant, and instead shows only his hand.



3. I thought the two had terrific chemistry. There was the clash of personalities so key to a screwball comedy--Lombard the outwardly neurotic wife and Montgomery the reactionary, inwardly neurotic husband--but the genuine affection they have for each other, doomed as it may be, still rings through. Lombard was slightly more subdued than in, say, Twentieth Century or My Man Godfrey, and this matched the tone of Montgomery's bemused-but-inwardly panicking husband. If they had been too different in their temperaments, it may not have worked as well.

#26 terranightangel

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Posted 21 July 2017 - 03:54 PM

What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc?

 

The mess and the amount of dishes suggest the couple doesn't care about cleaning, has a wait staff, has money though they don't have regular jobs as they must have been in the room for a long time.  The couple isn't the most honest with each other as the wife is faking being asleep and the husband fakes leaving the room. They do seem to actual care about each other and that is seen with their facial expressions. 

 

 

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? 

 

It's not typical as far as these two don't seem like the any folk off the street who lands in a mess of trouble and the female isn't already in trouble or headed in that direction.  I do think it has Hitchcock on it as it's different and playful and it lacks a great deal of dialogue compared to most films today. 

 

What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? 

 

​I think they have a certain chemistry between them that makes you want to see more of them on screen.  I'm not sure over the whole length of the film it would be the same thing but the opening does give a hint of playfulness and fun. 

 



#27 slp515

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Posted 20 July 2017 - 10:34 PM

Daily Dose #11: Thought I'd Left? 
Opening Scene from Hitchcock's Mr. and Mrs. Smith (1943)

1. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc?

In the opening sequence there was Hitchcock's touches of visual techniques, lighting and camera perspectives and sound. You know that by the disarray of the room and all the dishes, uneaten food, newspapers, glasses and bottles around that the couple had been there for awhile. You also knew that the couple was in a hotel room by the decor of the room, and that it was morning from the light and the tossing and turning of the lady in bed - as if she was waking up.


2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? 

I strongly disagree that the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings seen so far in the other Daily Doses. Although the music was upbeat and joyous, there was no dancing, no mysterious errie music to give you impression that something strange and weird was about to happen.


3. What do you think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? 

The casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery was actually very good. They had the right charisma especially during the scene where he pushed the door shut to make her think that he had left. The look between them suggested true love.

As far as both of them being well cast for the "comedy of remarriage" I only saw one scene that I considered rather funny and that was when he stepped on the couch to cross over to the window. And it was funny only the first time he did it. I guess i will have to see the rest of the film to answer further.

#28 Ann56

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Posted 20 July 2017 - 07:01 PM

1.    What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc? The following are all Hitchcock touches that I see:  The camera angles, especially the POV shots, the music which changes with the tone or mood of the scene, the tracking that is done while Mr. Smith navigates his way through the dishes to find a place to put down the breakfast tray.  In addition, we learn about the following about the couple:  The furniture, linens, and decorations tell us that they are well off and can afford such things, especially when he walks over the couch to answer the door. It gives us the feeling that he takes the material things for granted; therefore, he might take other people’s feelings for granted.

2.    Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not?  The fact that the camera moves through the room focusing on the dirty dishes and then to the cards and finally to the person does remind me of a typical Hitchcock opening.  However, since it is a comedy and not like Hitchcock’s other films, there are no indications of suspense.

3.    What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? I loved Carole Lombard in this role. I have to admit that I’ve never watched her movies, but I can see in this movie how engaging she is.  Robert Montgomery reminded me of a spoilt child, and I personally got annoyed with his character.  I wasn’t too impressed with the Gene Raymond character either, so I would have to vote for divorce and Carole finding someone other than Robert or Gene. Since I am of a younger generation, I did not live during the time that this movie was made and might not “get” what the norm of the day would have been.  So I will chalk it up to that. I also am not a big fan of comedies, so that might be another reason why this wasn’t one of my favorites. 



#29 Shannon.H

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 03:53 PM

What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc?

 

​We see love and humour.  Lots happening to set up the scene to introduce us to the couple.

 

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? 

 

I would say this is typical opening in that it introduces us to and sets up a little of what the story is, so in that way it is.  But this film certainly doesn't feel like your typical Hitchcock film.

 

What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? 

 

I loved them both!  I thought they fit extremely well together and were very believeable

as a couple.



#30 Shannon.H

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 03:43 PM

  1. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc 

 

 

  1. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? 
     
  2. What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? 


#31 Shannon.H

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 03:43 PM

  1. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc 

 

 

  1. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? 
     
  2. What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? 


#32 Thief12

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 09:16 PM

1. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc?

 

To be honest, I don't see much of a Hitchcock "touch" in it. However, we learn a lot from the opening: the couple have been in the apartment for a while, they either have been in a fight or don't care about cleaning. There is distance between them: she is in the bed, he is in the sofa.

 

I like how Montgomery carries himself in the scene, very casual, very laid-back. I like how he uses the couch to walk over it, instead of around it. The smoking, the bathrobe, the way he pulls the chair when bringing the breakfast to his wife. There's a certain air of "I don't care much" in his demeanor.

 

2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not?

 

I don't agree. Most of the Hitchcock openings we've discussed, and most of the ones I've seen (I still haven't seen most of his early 30's films, though) start with crowded places and action. The exceptions that I remember being Rebecca and The Farmer's Wife.

 

3. What do you think about the casting and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage"? Why or why not?

 

I like the chemistry. I still haven't seen this film, but what little I've seen, they do look like a couple that have been together for a while. The way she clings to her near the end of the scene showed a lot. The scene belongs to Montgomery, though, and like I said in the first question, he owns it. The body language, demeanor, etc. is perfect.



#33 hussardo

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 12:55 PM

1. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc? 
Close up and profile shots, virus information makes part of the "touches" we see in the opening sequence. You learn the couple's social status and possible background thought visual design.


2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? 
Yes, I agree with the statement purely because of camera movement and production design.

3. What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not?
The chemistry is there and you can clearly see it in the sequence. They were both well chosen and the cast works fine because of experience and previous work in this genre.

#34 dmaxedon

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 12:09 PM

1. Hmm, I see a room full of clues as to who these people are, well to do, spoiled, a staff of people waiting on them, i certainly wouldn't call them average. They do seem to be going through something, and we're about to find out what it is. It's probably going to be fun, and being a Hitch-pic, we are thinking it might be adventurous. There are some tracking shots that are reminiscent of Hitchcock, but if I didn't know it was his work, I don't know that I would have picked up on it, especially based on the subject matter, even though there are some familiar thematic elements, the couple in love, adventure, the camera work, etc.

2. Not really, it feels typical for the period and genre, but to say it is definitive Hitchcock, I'm not so sure. Is it good, yes, could only Hitchcock have done it, I'm not so sure.

3. They seem okay together, but he's not particularly likable, although, she isn't either, so maybe they're suited for each other. I decided to watch the movie, which I guess I hadn't ever done before, at least I don't have a memory of ever having done so, it was very difficult to get into, some funny spots, but it just felt like other movies from that period, good, but nothing special. Her quick change to be willing to be rid of him, even becoming engaged, was uncomfortable to watch, like the whole thing could have ended there, but of course they really do love each other, at least that's what the script says.



#35 D'Arcy

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 08:41 AM

✅ The movie opening I think has Hitch's direction all through. We have this lovely couple who are performing ordinary things in extraordinary circumstance. The scene is packed full of information and as the couple has taken themselves hostage we view the chaotic mayhem results and Mr Smith definitely thrown back on his resources as he slams door with cane while hiding sympathizing with his plight as he needs to get back to good graces. The scene is intimate like other daily doses and captures the audience immediately. Vouyerism is mentioned in conversation of the key hole. POV is directly related to form the characters using nonverbal communication allowing the scene and music to tell the story. The music score is fantastic as it captures his worry she's still in bed, her eye opening, him laying down the cards, and a whistling carefree mood. Characters are perfect and point to another wonderful film.
🎭💡📽🎬🎭

#36 Robinv

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 08:01 PM

1. This scene opens up with the whimsical music, scanning of the room showing total disarray, a man playing cards alone and a wife playing as if she is sleep. Right away you know these two have been in this room for awhile. You find out they are pretty well off because they have 2 servants. As the picture progresses you know they have done this before. Then they speak of the rules.

2. In a sense I can see a Hitchcock opening. Scanning the room to acquaint us with the set. characters and where this might lead us. A married couple that loves and fights just as hard.

3. I thought the chemistry between Lombard and Montgomery was great. They played off each other wonderfully. They were believable as a couple and their fighting was really cute. I enjoyed this movie immensely. This was the first time I saw this film.
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#37 fediukc1991

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 05:52 PM

We notice that the couple is ordinary. They had a fight, from what we can tell and it is just another day. It is typical when Hitchcock was in Selznick. Instead of a crowd or an audience, it is set with a couple. They both had chemistry on screen together.



#38 startspreading

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 03:03 PM

1.     What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc? 

I can recognize a playful score and a lavish set. Mr and Mrs Smith, as their own names show, are an ordinary couple. By the props, we can see that there has been a fight – it’s not a normal apartment, but one full of mess, with the wife sleeping alone in the bed and the husband playing cards. She is particularly mad, but wants to end the fight and forgive, but she doesn’t want to be the one to apologize – that’s why she pretends to be sleeping and peeks from under the sheets.

 

2.     Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? 

It’s typical for his Selznick years – just like in Rebecca and Shadow of a Doubt, and especially like in the later, the opening is not with a crowd, but in a bedroom. But it sets the tone early – they’re a fighting couple, but they love each other a lot.

 

 

3.     What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? 

I’m biased because I think Carole is perfect in all roles she played. I think they’re well cast, and Robert Montgomery adds playfulness and some kind of fun bad mood to his character. I can also envision Cary Grant as Mr Smith, with a great result.


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#39 AmyV

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Posted 16 July 2017 - 11:43 PM

1. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? 

The use of the music to help set the tone and feel. There are some POV shots, like the one that comes up to and stops on Carole Lombard in the bed. 

Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc?

The couple seem very messy, or as we learn, the fact is they have been holed up in the room for a while, thus the reason for the general messiness.  They are a wealthy pair, as it is a large bedroom and they have at least two paid housekeeping employees.  They like to tease each other.  With the lighting, music, and the action, the story seems pleasant, not foreboding, like in some of the other pictures. 

 

2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not?

As some of the other openings have somewhat been, this one seems more totally lighthearted; there is also the use of music to help set the scene - in this case, whimsical, playful sounding music. Of course, it is not one of those crowd scenes we've witnessed in several of his other films, but we have now seen some others that are not, either.  

 

3. What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not?

Personally, I do think they are well-cast here.  They seem comfortable and easy with one another, down to her briefly pressing on his nose with her finger and the way he grabs and holds her, also the teasing, like his slamming the door, pretending to have left the room, her reaction to that and his quickly revealing the truth that he has not left the room, in reality. 

Of course, we know how great Carole Lombard was in comedy, anyway, but I have to say with just this opening, it really makes me want to watch the entire movie, as I don't think I've seen it all in the past.  Unfortunately, I missed it when it was on last week, so we'll see if I can get hold of it soon. 

 


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#40 Mrs. Archie Leach

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Posted 16 July 2017 - 11:30 PM

The primary Hitchcock "touch" I notice is the use of humor in the scene but I wonder how much of that is Hitchcock and how much is the genre. We learn that the couple is wealthy and has been in the room for a while. The lighting is bright in the Smith home, more shadowy in the scenes depicting the law office. We can tell by the bystanders in the office and the staff at the home that the Smiths are a couple whose antics capture the interest of others. It piques the audience's interest in turn, The one camera shot that stood out to me was the closeup of Lombard's partial face under the covers. When there is a knock at the door and she opens her eye, it reminded me visually of the end of the shower scene in Psycho when Janet Leigh is laying on the tile with her eyes open. The tone of this film is obviously completely different.

 

It's hard for me to call this a typical Hitchcock opening because this doesn't seem to be a typical Hitchcock film. But I do think he manages to convey a lot of information in a short scene. We are interested in what is happening in the room.

 

I haven't watched the film but judging by this clip, I think the casting of and chemistry between Lombard and Montgomery works well enough. They are both playing the scene with a good mix of lightheartedness, stubbornness and vulnerability. It's clear that he wants to engage her and coax her out from under the covers when he tricks her with the slamming of the door, When she sits up her face conveys so much emotion -- disappointment when she thinks he has left turns into relief and then happiness. He is quick to console her and seems affectionate. The scene works in my opinion.


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