The Oscar nominated Mary Poppins Returns comes home on blu-ray and DVD today from Disney. Marrying the nostalgia of the original film, released some fifty-four years ago, with a poignant and emotional new story, the character comes back to the big screen (and now home) with the wonderful Emily Blunt stepping comfortably and confidently into the lead role.
The magical nanny arrives to help up the grown up Banks’ children, Micheal (Ben Whishsaw) and Jane (Emily Mortimer) keep their family home, as well as looking after Micheal’s children.
Helped by a lamplighter named Jack (Lin-Manuel Miranda), music and adventure fill the children’s’ lives as the film nods to its past, heartily embracing its nostalgia while using modern visual effects to create something familiar and brand new at the same time.
I, much like many others, grew up with the original Mary Poppins and was anxious about whether the new film would be able to stand up to the original, and I was happily entertained. From the opening production art used for the title credits, to every musical number in the film, I was along for the ride.
Consequently, I think, this is going to be a blu-ray that finds itself in heavy rotation. It’s one that I will quite happily throw on in the background, and watch my favorite sequences while I work. I think it’s because I find the visuals so engaging, and the music is so much fun to sing along to. I know all the songs, written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, and get caught up in them each time I hear them.
Being able to walk that line between something new, and catering to the nostalgia that one must, it is a sequel after all, is important to the film, and something that translates to the film’s extras as well.
There are glimpses inside some of the musical numbers of the film, the show-stopping A Cover is Not the Book, being my favorite, a collection of featurettes that plays as full length doc about the making of the film, a short visit with Dick Van Dyke, bloopers and a collection of deleted scenes.
This for me was a truly delightful experience and the transfer to blu-ray is exceptional, as one expects from Disney blu-rays. Everything about the film works for me, except for one sequence, of which I will not speak, the rest of the film I simply love, from the heartbreaking song The Conversation which links directly to the nominated Where the Lost Things Go to the snappy dialogue, to the theme of the film that sometimes, it is okay to play, and foster that imagination.
Emily Blunt is practically perfect in Mary Poppins Returns, available today from Disney on blu-ray and DVD.