A pioneering film within Animation, Musicals and Fantasy, Walt Disney's Mary Poppins
is possibly one of the warmest and dearest films ever made. Based on a story by PL Travers
we find Julie Andrews on fine form in her debut lead role (for which she would win the "Best Actress" Oscar). She is practically perfectly teamed with Dick Van Dyke as the lovable chimney sweep Burt, whose cockney accent is endearingly inaccurate. Along with a fine supporting cast, where even the child actors hold their own without appearing like stage school wannabes, Poppins and her crew take you on a magical ride through chalk pictures, the roof tops of London and show you that laughter is not always the best medicine (even with a spoon full of sugar) when you can't get down. In total Mary Poppins
clocked up five Academy Awards including Best Song and Best Visual Effects and has made it into the staple diet of family viewing across the world.
On the DVD: Mary Poppins has certainly cleaned up a treat, restoring her to 1.85:1 widescreen glory and 5.1 Dolby digital sound--which is guaranteed to be music to your ears. The special features are "supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" with the "Sing Along with the Movie" subtitles for all your favourite songs when they appear in the movie and the "I Love to Laugh" game offering Uncle Albert flying high in his parlour once more. "The Movie Magic of Mary Poppins" lets you look behind the scenes at how the magic was done and is fun, informative and easily understandable--pity the same cannot be said about the narrator. "Hollywood goes to a World Premiere" is a warm and amusing reminder about how premieres and stars used to be in 1964. The only disappointment is the lack of commentary--Dick Van Dyke would surely have offered a gem of a cockney voice-over! --Nikki Disney
A magical, musical nanny brings a breath of fresh air into the stuffy Banks household in turn-of-the-century England. Overstuffed with gaiety, this children's fantasy is filled to the brim with wonderful dance numbers and outrageous songs (such as the seemingly unpronounceable 'Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious'). The film's seamless blending of live-action with animation was a marvel in its day. This is Andrews' film debut and Darwell's last film appearance. Academy Award Nominations: 13, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best (Adapted) Screenplay. Academy Awards: 5, including Best Actress--Julie Andrews, Best Original Score, Best Song ('Chim Chim Cher-ee'), Best Editing, Best Special Visual Effects.