Back on Christmas Eve I went to see “Mary Poppins Returns” with my mom.
When I first heard the Disney was making a sequel to “Mary Poppins” over fifty years later I thought it was a very bad idea that reeked of greed. As much as I like Emily Blunt, I just couldn’t imagine anybody in the iconic role. However, since my mom was in town for the holidays and she wanted to see it I decided to give it a go.
I was pleasantly surprised by “Mary Poppins Returns”. I think it had both the strengths and weaknesses of the original film. At it’s best it is a charming film that makes you smile and warms your heart. At it’s worst it is boring with song and dance numbers that go on too long.
Considering that I feared the film would be a completely disaster I’ll take repeating the high and low points of the original as a win.
Emily Blunt won me over within five seconds.
She did a great job of taking the character of Mary Poppins and making it her own. She managed to play a character that we all know and love without making it a impersonation of Julie Andrews. I wasn’t big on Lin-Manuel Miranda before this film (I think “Hamilton” is beyond over-hyped but that’s another Oprah) and he didn’t do much to win me over, but he didn’t make me actively dislike him. Meryl Streep is a hoot in her small role and Dick Van Dyke lends an important source of legitimacy by lending his talents to this film.
I still think Disney made a sequel that wasn’t necessary for no reason other than greed, but the people involved managed to make a film with heart. It’s not a prefect film but it is worth seeing for anybody who is fond of the original film, Emily Blunt or Lin-Manuel Miranda.
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Justin Gomez and his sister, Terri, have never been close. Separated by nine years and distant in adulthood, Justin and Terri have little in common, except for the love of her three children. In the days before they embark on a road trip to visit the father that once abandoned them and their now deceased mother, both Terri and Justin are dealing with unexpected changes in their lives. Justin surprisingly realizes he might want more than a series of one night stands after a first date goes unexpectedly well. After a lifetime of being a strong type A personality, Terri is forced to confront the reality of the end of her marriage. As they hit the road, with Terri’s children in tow, they find themselves forced to rely on and confide in each other following a devastating event. Confronted with memories from the past and challenges from the present, Terri and Justin must dig deep and unearth the truth about themselves and their parents in order to build a new family based on their love for each other.