Story

Mary Poppins Returns is a sequel to Mary Poppins (1965), based on the books by P.J. Travers and set in London in the 1930s. Michael Banks (Ben Whishaw) and his sister Jane (Emily Mortimer) are now adults. Michael has three young children, Anabel (Pixie Davies), John (Nathaniel Saleh) and Georgie (Joel Dawson). Sadly, Michael’s wife has died, and he’s struggling to bring up his children and maintain his house and finances by himself. Just as the bank is about to foreclose on his mortgage, Mary Poppins (Emily Blunt) flies in on her umbrella to care for Michael’s children.

At first the children are reluctant to have Mary Poppins as their nanny, but it isn’t long before she wins them over with her magic and charm. Along with Jack the lamplighter (Lin-Manuel Miranda), Mary Poppins and the children have many wonderful, magical adventures. Mary Poppins is always there when needed, and in her own magical way she turns events around.

Themes

Loss of a parent; financial hardship; magic and fantasy

Violence

Mary Poppins Returns has some violence. For example:

  • The children have a fight over a precious porcelain bowl, left to them by their mother. They squabble, and the bowl ends up breaking.
  • Doing a dance, Jack whacks a cartoon penguin with his walking stick. He kicks another penguin and hooks a penguin with his stick and tosses it away.
  • A wicked cartoon wolf steals Georgie’s toy (a giraffe his mother had made for him) and lures Georgie away. The wolf captures Georgie and locks him in a cage attached to a carriage. He then takes off with Georgie, and John and Anabel chase after them.
  • Anabel hits a wicked cartoon badger with a cricket bat, and the badger falls out of a carriage.
  • All the children fall out of the carriage and go over ‘the edge of the bowl’.
  • Michael Banks gets very angry with his children.
  • A banker hits out at two men who try to remove him from his office.

Sexual references

None of concern

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

None of concern

Nudity and sexual activity

None of concern

Product placement

None of concern

Coarse language

There is some infrequent and very mild coarse language in Mary Poppins Returns.

Ideas to discuss with your children

Mary Poppins Returns is a Disney family movie. There are some dark and sad moments, which might affect younger children. Mary Poppins’s positive outlook on life is very uplifting, however, as is the music and dancing.

The main messages from this movie are about the importance of imaginative play and of always remembering your inner child.

Values in this movie that you could reinforce with your children include empathy, compassion, magic and fun, the importance of family, resourcefulness, and the power of positivity.

This movie could also give you the chance to talk with your children about real-life questions. For example, why is the banker so mean and greedy? Does he get what he deserves?