Anthony's Film Review
Mary Poppins (1964)
Mary Poppins delivers a wonderful mix of music, humor, and fun...
Mary Poppins is another one of those movies that I saw in my early childhood. I had such fond memories of this classic that I had to watch it again years later and relive those joyous moments. Boy, was that fun. This movie, along with The Wizard of Oz, was just great to see for the first time as an eight-year-old boy. In fact, I had seen both movies in grade school. The main reason I digress like this is because I want to emphasize how magical Mary Poppins is for everyone, both kids and adults.
Let's begin with the star of the movie. Julie Andrews is just perfect for the title role of a British nanny who flies into London with her magical umbrella and becomes employed by the Banks family to watch over their children. She portrays someone who is kind but firm as needed. She's the kind of nanny that anyone would want to have. Even the children may find her delightful. You know why? Because she cares about the mood of children and is willing to do anything to help them smile.
For example, if the children need to take some medicine, she adds a spoonful of sugar. That's one of the songs in this movie. "Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down," she sings. It's one of my favorite songs in this musical. In fact, there are plenty of great songs in this movie that it's hard to pick the best one of all. Therefore, I'll just simply list the songs I remember the best. There's the famous song surrounding one of the longest (though possibly fictional) words in the English language: "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious." During a later adventure, there are two songs related to chimneys: the slow "Chim Chim Cher-ee" and the upbeat "Step in Time." And at the end of the movie, there's the song "Let's Go Fly a Kite."
This is where I elaborate on the story. Basically, Mary takes the children on a fantastic adventure through different colorful worlds. Joining them is Dick Van Dyke as Bert the chimney sweeper. Together, they encounter dancing animated penguins, a tea party floating in midair, and various rooftops (where the chimney songs are sung). There's not really any kind of quest involved. As far as I know, the purpose of this trip is to stimulate a child's imagination, meaning the Banks children and the kids watching this movie.
As I look back at all the times I've seen Mary Poppins, I've come to realize the lesson it's trying to teach: No matter how sad or gloomy life can be, there is always an opportunity to laugh and smile if you know where to look. Plus, it's always nice to help others laugh and smile when they need to. After all, the character of Mary Poppins seems to change the lives of others throughout the course of the film. You can't help but smile and spread the joy. For all of these reasons, Mary Poppins is a classic. Among Disney films, musicals, and movies in general, it's a sure winner.
For more information about Mary Poppins, visit the Internet Movie Database.
In addition, check out my review of the topically related film Saving Mr. Banks.