Film review by Steve Duffy –
Marry Poppins Returns
The film is set in 1930’s depression-era London (the time period of the original novels) and is drawn from the wealth of material in PL Travers’ additional seven books. In the story, Michael (Ben Whishaw) and Jane (Emily Mortimer) are now grown up, with Michael, his three children and their housekeeper, Ellen (Julie Walters), living on Cherry Tree Lane. After Michael suffers a personal loss, the enigmatic nanny Mary Poppins (Emily Blunt) re-enters the lives of the Banks family, and, along with the optimistic street lamplighter Jack (Lin-Manuel Miranda), uses her unique magical skills to help the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives. Mary Poppins also introduces the children to a new assortment of colorful and whimsical characters, including her eccentric cousin, Topsy (Meryl Streep).
Blunt is no Julie Andrews, but that is ok. She makes this role entirely her own. She brings a blend of cheeky humor and puckishness to the role. Like Andrews, she has charming and stern relationship with the Banks children.
He may have shined in “Hamilton, but Lin Manuel Miranda as a singer and dancer needs a little work. Instead of “Chim Chim Cheree” we get “Trip a Little Light Fantastic.” It’s not a memorable tune, but it is fun to watch the dancers hanging from the lampposts.
Does Meryl Streep have to be in everything? She plays Mary’s cousin, Topsy and delivers a fun performance.
The amazing blend of animated and live-action visuals where both whimsical and believable.
The new songs are fun and catchy. They were written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman with Richard Sherman as a musical consultant.
Although Mary Poppins Returns closely follows the plot of the original film, it is still delivers a jolly good time.
Rating: PG for some mild thematic elements and brief action
Runtime: 130 minutes