“Mary Poppins Returns” Review


Katie Coen and Abby Blackmore

Nashoba journalists went to see Mary Poppins Returns at the AMC Boston Common Theater for the Boston press opening on December 18th. From the costumes, the dancing, and Emily Blunt’s different take on the famous role of Mary Poppins, the show was spectacular and left endless smiles on the audience’s faces.

“Mary Poppins Returns” is the sequel to the 1964 original Mary Poppins movie.  The story follows the Banks children 25 years after the original. Jane and Michael Banks have grown up and are both caring for Michael’s children, John, Annabel, and Georgie. With the Banks family mourning Michael’s wife’s death and struggling financially in the Great Depression era of London, Mary Poppins is needed once again to look after Bank’s children, both young and old. Instead of Bert, a new character, Jack, is introduced. He apprenticed with Bert and now is one of the many lamplighters in the heart of London, joining Mary Poppins and children on their many new adventures.

None of the original songs are in the sequel, but there are many great songs, including Lovely London Sky, Can You Imagine That?, The Place Where Lost Things Go, and The Royal Doulton Music Hall including two show-stopping numbers, The Cover is Not the Book and Trip a Little Light Fantastic.  Instead of the show-stopping tap number, Step in Time, from the 1964 movie, a jazzy hip-hop number performed by Jack  and the lamplighters was performed. The lack of tap was initially disappointing, but the dance number made up for it. The dance skills shown by the lamplighters were spectacular and the leading man, Jack (Lin Manuel-Miranda), stole the show.

The costumes reflect the time period, with Mary Poppins standing out with her red coat and signature parrot umbrella.  They take a twist on the original movie, especially when Mary Poppins and the children stepped into an animated world. The famous outfits worn by Mary and Bert are recreated as they sing new songs with new style thrown in by Blunt and Miranda.  

Many jokes were repeated and referenced from the first movie including Mary Poppins codfish line, the maid making obnoxious jokes, and the opening credits, which resembled the original movie. Right from the start the audience was indulged in remembrance of the movie that brought magic into everyone’s lives as a child.

The movie was really a great tribute to the original cast and the effort put in by the new cast really showed. Not only were the performances of the leading actors impressive, but the quality of the movie was fantastic. Kudos to the special effect editors who made the magic come to life from start to finish.

The movie was very well made and we would highly recommend you take a trip to your local movie theater to go see it. Special thanks to John Vitti for making this happen. And remember, anything can happen if you let it!