Ravenwood Reviews – Saving Mr. Banks

saving mister banks

   Who is Mary Poppins? Magical nanny? Childhood hero? No, not to this opinionated author. To her, Mary Poppins is family. This not-so-happy story reveals the truth behind the famous book and has already earned $23 million, as of December 26th. That’s only in the U.S.! It’s no wonder why.

   This film shows the true story behind the struggle of creating one of the most beloved movies in Disney history. During the entire movie, you catch glimpses into author P.L. Travers’ childhood and what led her to write such an amazing character. You get the chance to watch as, throughout the movie, Mrs. Travers (Emma Thompson) goes from Ice Queen to almost human. Secrets about Walter Disney (Tom Hanks) were also shared with the audience and helped to propel the believable character growth.

   I loved how the director, Mr. John Lee Hancock, made the flashbacks important. In many movies, the flashbacks are unnecessary and confusing, but in this particular movie, I felt that they made the film better. He, also, did a great job of keeping to the truth. I felt that this movie wasn’t “Hollywood-ified” and I think that’s why so many people enjoy(ed) it.

   There was no blatant comic relief, and the one that I found was more of an idea, not a person. Throughout the whole movie, Walt is annoyed with Pamela and vice versa, but the idea that they’re annoyed at each other because they are the same person, is both irony and comedy.

   One of my favorite things about this movie was the life lessons that presented themselves in the film. Lessons about the dangers of alcoholism and dying innocence as a child grows up. This movie is also a cautionary tale of what can happen if you value money over all else. The characters in the movie were so real that you found yourself rooting for them to beat their mental and physical struggles and became overjoyed or downtrodden, depending on the results. I also loved the aspect of learning a person’s true nature through the writing because, as a writer, I know that novelists often base characters in their books off of the people around them.

   Some lighthearted moments in the movie were due to the fact that Walt Disney had a spark of child-like imagination in him. During these moments the audience was able to experience the fantasies of Disney World and watched Pamela become more care free. I fell in love with the idea that Walt was so persistent because he loved the book and wanted to share it’s wonders with the world, and not for the money.

   Overall, the acting in this film was brilliant and I must say that Tom Hanks made a wonderful Walt Disney. Emma Thompson brought P.L. Travers to life and embodied her in every way, which made her that much more fun to watch. I give this movie a 9/10 because it was a brilliant piece of art, but not suitable for children and even some adults may have a hard time enjoying the movie due to the more sinister light that Mary Poppins is portrayed.

Stay Strong. Stay Beautiful.


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