Saturday, December 21, 2013

My 2013 Holiday Movie of Choice: Saving Mr. Banks

I’ve only been to the movie theater about once or twice in 2013, which is rare for a wife who was used to frequently organizing “dinner and a movie” dates with her husband…but when baby arrived last December, all of a sudden the opportunity to sit and watch a flick on the big screen became a non-existent luxury.
But when I saw the trailer for Disney’s new film, Saving Mr. Banks, I decided I was NOT going to miss another box office hit. Paul and I have conflicting schedules so my date for this outing was my litter sister Frances, who’s just as crazy about Mary Poppins as I am.

Yes… Saving Mr. Banks is based on the true story about how Walt Disney himself convinced the original author of the Mary Poppins book series to allow him to make a film adaptation based on her books. The movie shows everything that happened behind the scenes with both the author of the books and the Disney Movie production staff in order to create this most memorable childhood film.

Here with my lovely little sister Frenchee
Couldn't ignore the temptation for popcorn, soft drinks & Sour Patch Kids!
A shot of the movie screen at the end of the film. The names of the actors with pictures of the real people.

The iconic Mary Poppins written by P.L. Travers, adapted by Disney and played by Julie Andrews
Opening Night for Mary Poppins in 1964 From L to R: Star Julie Andrews, Walt Disney & PL Travers
I don’t want to ruin the movie for anyone because it just opened up in most theaters last week but if you're a big fan of Mary Poppins, it’s simply beyond extraordinary.
I'll just say that the unknown story of Mary Poppins, had more to do with the author's own family experience, including childhood memories of tragedy, alcoholism and a deep love for her father. The author initially refused to allow Disney to make Mary Poppins a fun, jovial, magical character...but twenty years later, she finally agreed albeit with endless rules and restrictions.
Now let’s see, Tom Hanks is my favorite actor over age 55 (he plays a great Walt Disney), Emma Thompson is a perfect female actor in my eyes (she plays P.L. Travers the author of the Mary Poppins books) and between the two they did a pretty darn good job of drawing Frances and I to tears, laughs, joy, excitement and nostalgia throughout the entire movie.
If I was ever a fan of all things Disney, my goodness, this film has made me an even bigger fan.
My smile is still stretching from ear to ear as I write this. I mean, what a great movie!
The only thing that briefly distracts my happy thinking is remembering that at the theater, I succumbed to a bag of freshly popped, buttery popcorn, possibly regaining one of the very few pounds I managed to lose during the holiday season.
But that’s life and life is great when you eat popcorn while watching an excellent movie.
Saving Mr. Banks is rated PG-13 and showing in theaters nationwide.

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