Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

Mary Poppins - 40th Anniversary Edition

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
9 out of 10
Extras Rating:
9 out of 10
Movie Details:
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Rating: G

Starring:
Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins
Dick Van Dyke as Bert/Mr. Dawes, Sr.
David Tomlinson as Mr. George W. Banks
Glynis Johns as Mrs. Winifred Banks
Hermione Baddeley as Ellen
Karen Dotrice as Jane Banks
Matthew Garber as Michael Banks
Elsa Lanchester as Katie Nanna
Arthur Treacher as Constable Jones
Reginald Owen as Admiral Boom
Ed Wynn as Uncle Albert
Reta Shaw as Mrs. Brill
Arthur Malet as Mr. Dawes, Jr.
Jane Darwell as Bird woman

Special Features:
All-New Animated Adventure Hosted By Julie Andrews

Musical Reunion With Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, And Richard Sherman

Never-Before-Heard Deleted Song

"I Love To Laugh" Set-Top Game

Rare Behind-The-Scenes Footage

Poppins Pop-Up Fun Facts

Commentary by Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, Karen Dotrice, Richard Sherman, and Robert Sherman

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious The Making of Mary Poppins

Other Info:
Widescreen (1.66:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
Original 2.0 Theatrical Mix
THX Certified
French, Spanish Language Tracks
Running Time: 139 Minutes

Synopsis:
The following is from the DVD cover:

"Experience the extraordinary animation, dazzling special effects, and award-winning music of Walt Disney's Mary Poppins in this fully restored and remastered 2-Disc 40th Anniversary Edition! Join the "practically perfect" Mary Poppins (Julie Andrews) for a "Jolly Holiday" as she magically turns every chore into a game and every day into a whimsical adventure. Along the way you'll be enchanted by unforgettable characters such as the multitalented chimney sweep Bert (Dick Van Dyke). Unpack Mary's magical carpetbag full of bonus features, including an all-new animated short, games, and a never-before-heard deleted song. You won't need "A Spoonful Of Sugar" to love every moment of this timeless Disney classic!"

Mary Poppins is rated G.

The Movie:
I could review Mary Poppins, but chances are that unless you've been raised by wolves or locked under the stairs by your evil aunt and uncle, you've already seen this movie at some point in your life. You probably also already know whether it's worth adding to your DVD collection. It features an amazing cast, classic songs, and remarkable special effects for the time period. It's no wonder that Mary Poppins won 5 Academy Awards including Best Actress. If you don't have Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, Chim Chim Cher-ee, Let's Go Fly A Kite, Spoonful of Sugar, or the other songs stuck in your head long after viewing the film, then you're probably deaf.

I will add that I was curious if Mary Poppins would entertain my 5 year old and my 3 year old. I popped it in and let them watch it. While they got bored by a number of the scenes, they were glued to the screen any time there was singing, dancing, or cartoons. So I think it's safe to say that even though Mary Poppins is 40 years old, it still is entertaining for children today.

The Extras:
There are quite a few excellent bonus features included on this DVD:

All-New Animated Adventure Hosted By Julie Andrews This short film is based on a story by Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers called "The Cat That Looked At A King". In this story a live-action Julie Andrews takes a couple of kids into a drawing to view the story unfold. David Ogden Stiers, Tracey Ullman, and Sarah Ferguson provide the voices for the animation. It's a fun little film and at the very end there's a little hint that Julie Andrews is still Mary Poppins. It's a nice treat to include on the DVD.

Musical Reunion With Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, And Richard Sherman This is a short conversation between Van Dyke, Andrews, and Writer / Composer Richard Sherman. They reminisce about the making of the film, meeting Walt Disney, the music, and more. Mary Poppins fans will really enjoy this.

Never-Before-Heard Deleted Song Richard Sherman performs "Chimpanzoo", one of the many songs not used in the movie. It's a funny song about rowdy kids being thrown in a zoo where the animals look at them instead of the other way around.

"I Love To Laugh" Set-Top Game In this game you answer trivia questions about the film to make Uncle Albert drift back down to the floor.

Rare Behind-The-Scenes Footage There is a lot of rare footage included on this DVD. There are a lot of shots without the special effects, alternate versions of scenes, outtakes, and other neat stuff. There is also footage from the premiere of the film as well as other publicity. I'm amazed at just how much vintage footage is here considering that this film is 40 years old.

Poppins Pop-Up Fun Facts A standard feature on a lot of DVDs these days, this allows windows with trivia to pop up as you watch the movie.

Commentary by Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, Karen Dotrice, Richard Sherman, and Robert Sherman This is an absolutely wonderful commentary by the main surviving cast and composer Robert Sherman. Though the commentaries with Andrews and Van Dyke were recorded separate from the rest, they all have great stories from the set and memories from making the movie. This is a commentary well worth listening to, especially for Poppins fans.

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious The Making of Mary Poppins This is probably the highlight of the bonus features. At 50 minutes long, this retrospective hosted by Dick Van Dyke is an extensive look at the making of the movie. It tells how Walt Disney tried for 30 years to get author P.L. Travers to give him the film rights to her book. It tells how the creation of the songs was done, how it was filmed, and more. It goes from those early stages all the way to the awards that the film won. This is a very interesting look at the making of the movie and a documentary that Disney fans will really, really enjoy.

The Bottom Line:
This DVD is supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! Young and old fans will thoroughly enjoy this 40th Anniversary set.

Order this DVD @ Amazon

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