By VARSHA BADAVIDE
Mary Poppins Returns is a 2018 fantasy adventure musical directed by Rob Marshall, starring Emily Blunt in the titular role of the timeless Mary Poppins. It also stars actor and writer of the multiple award-winning musical, Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda. The musical is a sequel to the original Mary Poppins, which remains as one of the most loved musicals of all time.
Set twenty-five years after the events of the original film, Mary Poppins Returns follows the story of the Banks children, who are now adults with families of their own. It opens by showing the situation of the Banks children, with Michael Banks (Ben Whishaw), a widowed father of three, dealing with the tragic death of his wife, and Jane Banks (Emily Mortimer) as a sweet, supportive aunt and sister. The Banks’ childhood home is in danger of being repossessed, and Michael is struggling to keep it. On top of that, Michael and his children are grieving over the death of his wife and their mother. As all their struggles and problems continue to pile up, Mary Poppins flies in from the sky with her kite, coming back once again to help the Banks family deal with their troubles. As she guides Michael’s children, and eventually Michael and Jane themselves, through fun-filled, imaginative adventures, she humbly helps the family deal with their losses, as well as bring them all closer together. The plot of the movie is a very warm and touching story, all made even better with the Mary Poppins’ presence.
The musical does a spectacular job of inciting nostalgia for those who greatly enjoyed the original film with its uplifting, enjoyable musical numbers and fantastical, imaginative adventures, as it shows Mary Poppins return to take care of the Banks family during a time of serious crisis and tragedy.
Additionally, Mary Poppins Returns is filled with amazing songs, all of which are very bright and elevating, with energetic performances from all of the cast. The costumes and setting are all very buoyant and visually appealing, clearly conveying the children’s theme of the movie. While the sequel is very lively and nostalgic, it does not present the same kind of magic present in the original film. The sequel presents its adventures in a very creative way, similar to the original musical. However, the original Mary Poppins has an irreplicable charm, as it depicts the sweetness of childhood while also discussing issues that were (and may still be) relevant during the time of its release. Though the sequel doesn’t completely match the timeless spirited, exuberant vibe of the first Mary Poppins, it is a very worthy film itself.
Mary Poppin Returns is a worthy film for all audience members. It is filled with nostalgia of the first musical, and even for those who haven’t watched the first, it’s a very cheerful and enjoyable film that will you get singing along to all its joy-filled songs.