This was the first thing that popped in my mind as I began watching Disney’s “Mary Poppins Returns” in a cinema in Trinoma, Quezon City recently.
I have to admit it was with great reluctance that I decided to watch this Disney production. The traffic around Quezon Memorial Circle was so heavy I decided to kill time by watching a movie.
I had a choice of movies to watch. There were the movies remaining from the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) that started last Christmas. Then there was the Transformers prequel movie “Bumble Bee,” the DC movie “Aquaman, and the Marvel animated film “Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse.” And, of course, “Mary Poppins Returns.”
Since I didn’t like the remaining MMFF movies and I have already seen the foreign super hero films, all that was left for me to watch was the Disney movie.
I didn’t have any expectations about “Mary Poppins Returns” but I have seen the original “Mary Poppins” which starred Julie Andrews. And that told me that this was really a film geared for children.
Since all I wanted to do was to kill time, I told myself: “Why not? I’ll go ahead and watch it.”
And it turned out to be a good choice.
The movie was not disappointing. It was surprisingly enjoyable.
Emily Blunt, the actress who played the lead character Mary Poppins, definitely owned the role. She was a fitting successor to Julie Andrews.
The sequel’s story was cleverly designed to bring back Mary Poppins in a manner that had a firm link to the original 1964 movie.
The 2018 Mary Poppins had to deal with the challenges facing the other characters, most of whom were the children in the first film. The chimney sweeps in the original movie were now lamp lighters.
It was a good move by writer David Magee. And Rob Marshall, who was the director, took Magee’s script and transformed it into a classic Disney musical.
Part of the sequel’s appeal was its faithfulness to the original’s look and feel, especially when the actors interacted with the movie’s animated elements. The songs, too, had that definite Disney feel.
The Rotten Tomatoes website confirmed my view about the movie.
In the website, “Mary Poppins Returns” garnered a “Certified Fresh” rating with 78% of polled movie critics enjoying the Disney film. The website also recorded an audience score of 70% based on Rotten Tomatoes users giving the movie an average of 3.7 stars out of five stars.
The movie stars Emily Blunt as Mary Poppins, Lin-Manuel Miranda as Jack, Ben Whinshaw as Michael Banks, Emily Mortimer as Jane Banks, Julie Walters as Ellen, Collin Firth as William Weatherall Wilkins, Meryl Streep as Topsy, Pixie Davies as Annabel Banks, Nathanael Saleh as John Banks, Joel Dawson as George Banks, and Angela Lansbury as the Balloon Lady.
Dick Van Dyke, who starred in the original movie, returned for the sequel. He played the character of Mr. Dawes Jr.
Playing the roles of annoying neighbors were David Warner as the retired Admiral Bloom and Jim Norton as Mr. Binnacle, Bloom’s first mate. These two characters, primarily used for comedic effect, have a vital and unexpected part in the movie’s resolution.