Emily Blunt as Mary Poppins? Can you imagine that?
54 years after the original, Mary Poppins returns (literally) in a sequel that is practically perfect in every way. The American musical stars British actress Emily Blunt in the titular role, along with a star-studded cast. This includes big names like Julie Walters, Meryl Streep, Colin Firth and even the original Bert himself, Mr Dick Van Dyke.
From beautiful, briny oceans being found at the bottom of the bathtub, a musical extravaganza inside a China bowl, and the world literally turning upside down, Mary Poppins lets the imagination of the Banks children run wild. The magic of the original is recreated once again in a truly successful fashion.
Directed by Rob Marshall, known for his award winning work with Chicago and Into the Woods, it was certain that Mary Poppins was going to be nothing less than brilliant. After three years of rehearsals, filming, visual effects and animation, the film finally premiered at the Dolby Theatre at the end of November last year.
Just over a month after its release, the film has currently grossed $320 million worldwide. And just like the original, it has received a huge number of award nominations. This includes four Golden Globes, nine Critics’ Choice Awards, three BAFTAs, and a singular SAG award for Blunt’s performance.
Blunt’s performance is not the only one that is deserving of all the awards. Lin Manuel-Miranda shines in his first major film role. Known for creating the multi-award winning musical Hamilton, Miranda recreates the charm and enthusiasm of Bert perfectly. Opening the film with “Lovely London Sky” and wowing audiences in the spectacle that is “Trip a little Light Fantastic”, Jack the Lamplighter is sure to be a favourite.
The entire cast is superb throughout. The performances of the Banks children is both heartwarming and moving. The film once again shows the strong relationship between a father and his children. Ben Whishaw and Emily Mortimer portray Jane and Michael perfectly. Plus, Julie Walters is a barrel of laughs as the Bank’s longtime housekeeper Ellen. Colin Firth plays the absolute Disney villain, who is brought to justice by everybody’s favourite hero, none other than Dick Van Dyke.
My personal favourite supporting role was portrayed by Meryl Streep. The award-winning actress plays Poppins’ eccentric cousin, Topsy. Despite her role being on the smaller side, Streep shines in a performance that is playful and fun, matching the wild musical number that goes along with it.
Speaking of music, the film’s entire soundtrack is excellent. Composed by Marc Shaiman, the soundtrack features 13 new songs written especially for the film. This is along with a score that samples the original songs from the first film, honouring the work of the Sherman Brothers. Shaiman has created a selection that will be loved by fans both new and old. Whether you enjoy bouncy and lively numbers such as “A Cover is Not the Book” or slow, emotional numbers that are sure to pull on your heartstrings like “The Place Where Lost Things Go”, there is something for everyone.
Is there chance of another Disney sequel in the future?
This entire masterpiece is an extravaganza that all ages will enjoy. Emily Blunt has brought life back into a devoted character beloved by many and introduces the possibility of a continuation of Mary Poppins’ story. Director Rob Marshall has confirmed that a third film could be in early development! From the worldwide buzz surrounding this film, it appears Disney has once again successfully produced another picture that will be watched over and over again. Just like the original.