In the world of international espionage, love can get you killed. A boyfriend or girlfriend may be nice to come home to at the end of an assignment, but if your enemies get ahold of them, you need to be able to cut your losses and forget about them, or your life -- and more importantly, your mission -- will be forfeit. Which is why it's a good idea for spies to only date spies; they know what they're in for, and they don't get taken hostage easily. In Killers, Ashton Kutcher's spy character teams up with his clueless civilian wife (Katherine Heigl) when he's targeted by assassins, and while we're not sure giving her a gun was the best idea, it made us think about some of the best and worst spy couples in film history.
Best: Notorious (1946)
When (Cary Grant) needs to put the daughter of a Nazi scientist (Ingrid Bergman) undercover in a South American Nazi cell, he keeps his feelings for her hidden -- it's the mission, after all. But when her cover is blown and he finds out she's being poisoned, he marches right into the Nazi den to get her out. Professional, practical and romantic, all in one package -- that's Cary Grant in a nutshell.
Worst: Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005)
They're the two greatest assassins in the world, and we get that they maintain deep covers, but how could neither of them know that their significant other is also an assassin? Wouldn't they recognize the same tactics? They've both got weapons scattered around the house that the other has incredibly never found, and the minute they find out the other is a killer, they amazingly turn on each other like rabid dogs. So much for wedding vows.
Best: Undercover Blues (1993)
When kids enter the picture, it's time for spies to start thinking about the future. The operatives designated Mr. and Mrs. Blue (Dennis Quaid and Kathleen Turner) have retired to live out their lives with their baby girl, but when national security is at stake, the pair make sure their daughter is well taken-care of (financially, anyway) before taking on a Czech arms dealer.
Worst: The Avengers (1998)
As if their innocuously flirty British banter wasn't annoying enough, their inability to defeat a villain who occasionally dresses like a giant teddy bear is also disappointing.
Best: North by Northwest (1959)
Although he's only mistaken for a spy at first, Cary Grant's character eventually needs to step up and play the part, especially when the gorgeous enemy agent who's been shadowing him turns out to be an American double agent. And when you truly love another spy, you keep them from plummeting off of Mount Rushmore.
Worst: The Russia House (1990)
When your spies are non-professionals, thing have a tendency to go off the rails. In order to save his gorgeous contact (Michelle Pfeiffer) and her family, Sean Connery's smitten book buyer actually turns sensitive information over to the Russians! The Russians! Say it ain't so, Old James Bond!
Best: La Femme Nikita (1990)
After getting her out of jail and into a black ops training program, it looks like Bob (Tcheky Karyo) is crushing on Nikita, big time. But their first big dinner date turns out to be her final exercise, a tricky assassination, and the kiss she gives him on her eventual return is the only one she says he'll ever get. Sure, they never get together, but when they eventually reconnect, it's clear they still love each other.
Worst: True Lies (1994)
It's one thing to invite your civilian wife into your life as a counter-terrorist agent, but it's another thing entirely to use your work connections to bust her for infidelity, then to force her to go on a mission or die, then make dance a striptease for you without revealing yourself. Way to be a role model, Governor Schwarzenegger.
Worst: Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997), The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999), Goldmember (2002)
Austin Powers is not someone you want to have a relationship with, which may explain why all of his relationships are disastrous. In the first movie, Vanessa Kensington is the daughter of an old flame (ugh!) who spurns him repeatedly, then suddenly does an emotional about-face and marries him, then turns out to be a robot. In the second film, Felicity Shagwell, who seems to have been emotionally damaged by her own surname, sleeps with Fat Bastard under orders, and then sleeps with two temporally co-existing Austins simultaneously (double ugh). 1975's Foxxy Cleopatra seemed nice, but we're still wondering how young she was when Austin dated her prior to his disappearance in 1967. (Beyoncé was 21 when she played her, which means she would have been about 14 at the time. Ugh thrice.)
Check out the Killers set diaries of Kutcher and Heigl here!
Watch a video interview with Killers stars Ashton Kutcher and Katherine Heigl.
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