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Home Theater Movie Renter's Guide - December, 2013

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"Mary Poppins" (Blu-ray) - Reviewed by Jim Milton

Movies-Dec-2013-Poppins

Synopsis

“Practically Perfect in Every Way” Mary Poppins flies out of the windy London skies and into the home of two mischievous children. With the help of a carefree chimney sweep named Bert (Dick Van Dyke), the spirited nanny turns every chore into a game and every day into a “Jolly Holiday.” The movie received 13 Academy Award(R) nominations and won 5 Oscars(R) for Best Actress, Best Song, Best Music Score, Best Film Editing, and Best Special Visual Effects. It also received a special scientific award for the creation and application of Color Traveling Matte Composite Cinematography, which helped make the combination of live action and animated actors in the film possible

Specifications

  • Disney Video Entertainment
  • 2013, Color, Rated PG, 2 Hr 19 mins
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • 1080p
  • Codec: AVC
  • English 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Starring: Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, Ed Wynn, Hermione Baddeley, Karen Dotrice
  • Directed by: Robert Stevenson
Rating
  • Entertainment:
  • Video:
  • Audio:
  • Extras:
  • Violence: No
  • Sex: No
  • Language: No

Commentary

In my opinion, this is Walt’s crowning achievement. It took over 20 years to get approval for motion picture production from the author, PL Tavers, but the final product was a timeless masterpiece that compares to the all time childrens classic,  The Wizard of Oz. After revisiting this movie (which brings back wonderful childhood memories), I have decided the real star here is Van Dyke, who in spite of some “cockney” slips, can sing and dance like a natural born entertainer. The story is deceptively simple, but the movie as a whole is very entertaining, even in this day and age of whiz-bang CGI. After 50 years, this movie hasn’t aged a day. you need to buy this film and create some wonderful childhood memories for your young 'uns. It's a shame that this type of movie will probably never be made again...such was the genius of Disney Studios.

Technical

The picture is beautiful with bright, bold colors and costumes. A fine film grain layers the picture, but doesn’t obscure any of the details. I saw no flecks, dirt or scratches during the viewing. Details abound: notice the obvious makeup effects on Dawes Sr. (Van Dyke) . I also noticed that the little girl has a baby tooth in front on some scenes, then an adult tooth, then a baby tooth again…which serves as a reminder as to how long a movie production can be. A few shots exhibited some softness, but that would be from the stock and not the transferring process. Dialog is very firmly anchored in the center channel with musical effects spreading out with the R/L. The sub only comes into play during a few scenes with fireworks and cannon shot. The rears are in play, too, but they are subtle.

Extras

Commentaries, Disney on Broadway, Disney backstage, Publicity, Music and more. Most of this was on the 40th anniversary DVD.