Summary: When Walt Disney’s daughters begged him to make a movie of their favourite book, P.L. Travers’ “Mary Poppins,” he made them a promise that he didn’t realize would take 20 years to keep. In his quest to obtain the rights, Walt (Tom Hanks) comes up against a curmudgeonly, uncompromising writer (Emma Thompson) who has absolutely no intention of letting her beloved magical nanny get mauled by the Hollywood machinery. It is only when he reaches into his own childhood that Walt discovers the truth about the ghosts that haunt her, and together make one of the most endearing films in cinematic history..
Australian Cinema Release Date: 26th December, 2013
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Country: USA, UK, Australia
Director: John Lee Hancock
Screenwriter: Kelly Marcel, Sue Smith
Cast: Michelle Arthur (Polly), Kathy Baker (Tommie), Melissa Bickerton (Mrs. Corry), Lily Bigham (Biddy), Claire Bocking (Nanny Claire), Annie Rose Buckley (Ginty), Kimberly D’Armond (Katie Nanna), Lynly Ehrlich (Mrs. DaGradi), Colin Farrell (Travers Goff), Paul Giamatti (Ralph), Rachel Griffiths (Aunt Ellie), Tom Hanks (Walt Disney), Kristopher Kyer (Dick Van Dyke), Andy McPhee (Mr. Belhatchett), B.J. Novak (Robert Sherman), Ginger Pauley (Joyce Sherman), Melanie Paxson (Dolly), Jason Schwartzman (Richard Sherman), Victoria Summer (Julie Andrews), Dendrie Taylor (Lillian Disney), Emma Thompson (P.L. Travers), Ronan Vibert (Diarmuid Russell), Thomas R. Waters (Andrew Dutton), Bradley Whitford (Don DaGradi), Ruth Wilson (Margaret Goff)
Runtime: 126 mins
OUR SAVING MR. BANKS REVIEWS & RATINGS:
Please check Greg’s review of ‘Saving Mr. Banks’ that is available on http://www.filmreviews.net.au/
Do you remember “Mary Poppins?” The all singing and dancing affair with Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke and some penguins thrown in for good measure. Well a film set during the making of the 1964 family favourite film “Mary Poppins” doesn’t exactly have the allure of films such as “Hitchcock” or “Me And Orson Welles”, but don’t be put off because “Saving Mr. Banks” is a film that is pure cinematic masterpiece. While award wins may show that director John Lee Hancock’s last film, “The Blind Side,” was the better film that theory is without a doubt incorrect because “Saving Mr. Banks” is one of the finest films to have come out of Hollywood in a long time.
Many cinema lovers perhaps don’t realise that “Mary Poppins” almost didn’t happen. The fascinating script of “Saving Mr. Banks” chronicles as the reluctant Poppins creator P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) reluctantly has to make the decision to travel to Los Angeles and talk with Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) about the possibility of her much loved character hitting the big screen.
The idea of Mary becoming an animated buddy for the likes of Mickey Mouse is just too much for Travers and she plans on travelling to L.A. and pretty much telling Disney where he can stick his project. However, money is now a problem for her and she finds herself holding off on saying no to Disney, instead she finds herself reluctantly bonding with her driver, Ralph (Paul Giamatti) and having to sit down with the ‘in-her-eyes-annoying’ Sherman brothers (B.J. Novak and Jason Schwartzmann) – the two men charged with the task of bringing music into Mary Poppins’ world.
At the same time the audience is shown the inspiration behind the Poppins’ book Travers’ relationship with her drunken but loving father Travers Goff (Colin Farrell) and the arrival of her Aunt Ellie (Rachel Griffiths) on the scene.
There is so much to love about “Saving Mr. Banks.” Firstly the screenwriting team absolutely nail the characters involved. Those who were close to P.L. Travers and Walt Disney have seen this film and been surprised by just how realistic the characters are. Then there is of course the fact that those same screenwriters have almost brought a sense of suspense to the film. Once you become engrossed in the plot you simply forget that “Mary Poppins” did make the big screen and you find yourself waiting with baited breath as Travers and Disney battle over whether the film will be made.
The other part of “Saving Mr. Banks” that will stun its audience is the flashback sequences to outback Queensland. Not only does this section bring some real heartfelt moments to the film but the scenes allow cinemagoers to once again since the acting stylings of one Colin Farrell. Mr. Farrell has delivered some real dogs of films recently (anybody else see “Total Recall”?) so it’s good to see him embracing the role of Travers Goff and putting in a performance that is worthy of some award nominations.
Also joining Farrell with outstanding performances in “Saving Mr. Banks” are Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks. Thompson becomes the very-British Travers alarmingly well while Hanks puts in a surprising performance of Disney. Technically Hanks shares no physical resemblance to Disney at all but captures the spirit of the man in a way that is sure to garnish him more award glory. This performance on the back of his work in “Captain Phillips” just goes to show why Hanks is one of the better actors of the modern generations.
The words cinematic masterpiece shouldn’t be used lightly but that is exactly what “Saving Mr. Banks” is. This is a charming film that recaptures the magic of Hollywood.
Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Saving Mr. Banks′: Please check our Saving Mr. Banks review on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep 63.