So, I was watching Mary Poppins (1964) the other day. It is one of my favorite Disney films ever. I remember watching it constantly as a child along with the majority of other Disney films. However, I've just realized something. What exactly is Mary Poppins? Ok, so maybe you are laughing now, but seriously, what the heck is she!?
All right, we all know one thing for sure, that Mary Poppins is indeed a nanny. Why is the nanny able to do all this magic? Is she a good witch? She does have a carpet bag, she's able to have conversations with dogs, she fly, she can transport herself and others into paintings, and that's just naming some of the things she can do. A witch just doesn't make sense though, not in a Disney sense at least, seeing as all the witches in Disney are portrayed as hideous and terribly evil women. Mary Poppins does not fit this.
Then, is she a guardian angel sort of figure? She does come to the children when she realizes that they are in great need of a good nanny or guardian in general. Let's face it, the Banks kids are terribly neglected by their parents. At the beginning, the father seems to find them only as a great annoyance. His work is his life and he doesn't seem to think he should spend time with his children. Although, he really is concerned that the children are being properly cared for by someone. The mother is neglectful as well, for she is much too concerned about her women's rights movement. She's not cruel to the children when she sees them and doesn't find them to be a great annoyance. She listens to them once in a while, but she mostly she just ignores them. Mary Poppins must be their guardian angel!
My top three favorite scenes of this film include: (1) 'Step in Time,' (2) the entire animated sequence, and (3) is a tie between the 'Spoonful of Sugar' and the 'Feed the Birds' scenes. 'Step in Time' has a spectacular amount of choreographed dancing. It is impressive and I love watching it! I also love how they run all over the roofs of houses and are forced into the Banks' chimney after those weirdoes with the house with the boat thing on it blast the fireworks at them. I find it hilarious that they trash that house and no one seems to care except for the father.
Disney animation is always a great thing to watch. I love this entire painting world in Mary Poppins because I think it's so pretty! The pastels used and the animation effects in general are fantastic. Also, the interactions with the actors and the animated world is fun to watch. Bert is absolutely glorious during the scene with the penguins! I also love the little romance between Bert and Mary Poppins. Of course, you can't forget the carousel horses and Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
The 'Spoonful of Sugar' scene is always fun to watch! Who wouldn't want to pick up a room by snapping his or her fingers?! It'd be awesome! Also, I just read the other day that Julie Andrews actually did the whistling for that animatronic robin during the song. That's pretty amazing! I adore Michael Banks during this scene as well. It's so cute watching him try and try to snap his fingers!
The 'Feed the Birds' scene always gets me. I think that the song is beautiful. Also, I love the lesson that the children are learning at this point in time. Mainly, sometimes there are people who cannot see past the end of their noses, which is very true. Also, giving is much better than investing in something for your own benefit. Beautiful scene.