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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Magic in the Air
by Betty Jo Tucker

On my birthday last month, I finally got to see "Mary Poppins Returns." Although not quite a classic like the original Mary Poppins movie, this charming sequel is entertaining and heart-tugging. The colorful musical numbers delighted me, and I especially enjoyed watching Meryl Streep, Angela Lansbury and Dick Van Dyke in their short appearances on camera.

Plus, Emily Blunt performs her own special magic in the title role, Lin-Manuel Miranda works hard to please as a gentle lamplighter, and actors playing the Banks children are simply darling. 

Musical highlights include: a spirited Music Hall number explaining why a book cover is not a book; the rousing dance routine by London's athletic lamplighters; and Emily Blunt singing the Oscar-nominated song, "Where the Lost Things Go."

Also, what a treat to watch Streep showcasing her accent skill in a topsy-turvy way! And the sight of Van Dyke still singing and dancing at age 93 is something I will never forget. Plus, I loved Lansbury in the  whimsical balloon finale.     

We should not forget the magical special effects that take us down a bathtub drain with Mary Poppins and the three Banks youngsters. It’s such fun floating around under the sea with them. And what a surprise it is to see the great Colin Firth as a corrupt banker who tries to take their home. Because he’s so convincing, I almost yelled “Boo!” whenever he appeared on screen.

Playing the grieving widower, Ben Whishaw won me over -- partly because I love his voice, which kept reminding me of Paddington, my favorite film bear. Emily Mortimer as his sister also earned my empathy. Her character is so sensitive and caring!    

No wonder I had to write a poem to celebrate.

A strange wind blows.
A kite ebbs and flows.

Look at the sky.
Poppins is nigh.

She’s back, you know
to help kids grow.

Their dad is blue.
His debts are due.

Without his wife,
he lives in strife.

Mary Poppins brings laughter back.
Musical magic is her knack.

But will it help save the Banks’ home?
I cannot tell you in this poem.

Just watch the film and feel its glow.
You won’t be sad you’ve seen this show
.

 

(Released by Walt Disney Studios and rated “PG-13” for mild thematic elements and some action.)

For more information about Mary Poppins Returns, go to the IMDb or Rotten Tomatoes website.


                                                                                                                                                                               
 
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