Parent reviews for Mary Poppins Returns

Common Sense says

Blunt is a delight in sweet, nostalgic, toe-tapping sequel.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 103 reviews

Kids say

age 5+
Based on 57 reviews
Adult Written byHope00 December 20, 2018

Missed the mark

First, the movie was LONG. without previews it's over 2 hours long. for kids in my opinion, it's too long. the movie was different than the orginal in these ways. It is scary and dark in several scenes. I understand it was rated PG, but, unlike the original, it has several truly scary scenes. it also touched on many heavy subjects. death, loss of security, nightmares, lying and deceit. also, there were many scenes where the father was very angry with his children. the orginal Mary Poppins did have a few scenes like this, but, it was more of a snip than a rant. the overall movie aesthetically was dark. as in the lighting, coloring, gray skies, etc. then there were moments of polar opposite brightness, color, cheery songs. however, it was maybe 30% happy and 70% dark or low/sad. there were points where the movie seemed to drag and the storyline would go over a 7 or 8 year olds head. mostly in regards to the songs. the songs were used to guide the characters to dealing with the perils in the storyline and were not straightforward. that's fine for an older viewer but for those that are younger I feel it left the scary parts more prominent. I went with 4 total adults and 6 children. the acting was great. the happy parts were cute, but too few. overall I was disappointed because I thought the movie would be fun and uplifting. we left with many of the children frightened and my daughter fearing she would have nightmares. my daughter is not easily frightened. I feel like Mary Poppins Returns was geared towards those that watched Mary Poppins as a child and are now adults and missed the mark for those that may be children watching for the first time.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Parent of a 9-year-old Written byPhoenix T. December 23, 2018

Very disappointing. The 70% 'dark' film completely fails at even coming close to recreating themagicof the orginal Mary Poppins. Completely fails. Chaotic and scattered incoherent mess. Not nearly as inspired or as good as the original. Blunt and others fail to create the 'magic's of the original.

Don't buy the hype with Disney's spin machine.
The 70% 'dark' film fails at coming close to recreating themagicof the orginal Mary Poppins. Completely fails. It is a poor rehash job, a chaotic and scattered incoherent mess. Not nearly as inspired or as good as the original. Blunt and others fail to create the 'magic's of the original. Its "ok" at best but I think will leave fans of the original story disappointed. I agree with others re this being too "dark". Its not nearly as inspired or as good as the original "Mary Poppins." Blunt and others fail to create the 'magic's of the original.
Adult Written byJess B. December 21, 2018

A different review...

I am writing this review because I couldn't find other reviews to answer this question before we went to see the movie. My kids are extremely sensitive, and I wanted to know if this movie had any sad elements. The answer is yes. There are two moments when the dad is crying about losing his wife. They are brief, but one of my children was crying, and I will admit I shed a tear as well. I was worried about the end, when Mary Poppins leaves, but it wasn't too dramatic or drawn out and my kids were fine.

As one reviewer noted, there is a frightening/tense carriage scene during an animated part. Average children will find it fine, but if your child is sensitive to scary situations, you may want to have them leave the theatre for that scene.

Overall, for the average child I would say there is nothing objectionable in this movie. However it is very long (over 2 hours); it is long even for an adult, so I would not recommend it for young children.

I won't give a full review of this movie as there are many other ones to read, but I will say I love Mary Poppins and I love Emily Blunt and I was skeptical about this movie, but Emily Blunt was great! The movie was okay. My children and I both enjoyed it.
Adult Written byJazzMan December 26, 2018

Practically perfect

I had to put in 2 cents (or rather my tupence) worth, because it seems other reviews were from a different movie. I, and my family, thought it was amazing. Great music, songs, and choreography, many “tip of the hats” to the original, and all of the “magic” that makes Mary Poppins who she is. Emily Blount does an excellent job of bringing her own take on the character while retaining some of the original. Some complained about the dark parts. True, the one scene may be frightening for some small children, but the dark was not 70% of the movie. And the length is typical for today’s standards. I actually didn’t realize how long it was, and was surprised at the hour when it was over. But as they say, time flys when you’re having fun, right? Overall, I would highly recommend it for those who remember the original, as well as those who this is their first immersion into the wonderful world of Mary. Can’t wait to add it to my collection.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byJonezer December 25, 2018

Good, Just Not Necessary

Sure, I'm old school. The original ranks in my top five Important American Films. This "sequel": not so much. It's gorgeous, the songs are fine. The problem is the ."..Returns" qualifier. IF this movie had responded to current socio-economic concerns: the housing market, corporate greed, etc... It might have been relevant.
Instead, filmmakers settled into the "obligatory" sequel stance: "Oh, we GOTTA have a "Chim-Chim-Cheree" showstopper, etc. As a result, we are burdened with Meryl Streep's totally irrelevant, but perfunctory take on "I Love to Laugh." And the lackluster "Stay Awake" version called... Well, I forgot already.
The great tragic storytelling blunder here is the ticking clock: "You Must Pay the Rent!" deadline which leaves the audience waiting for the happy ending. IF Poppins could turn back time, why didn't she just do it instead of laboring through Lin Manuel Miranda's excruciating scaling of Big Ben? Makes no sense...
Whereas the original had heart, and a flawless story line that gradually focused on the Real Issue: Mr. Banks, this revisiting feels belabored. It's good. Just... Unnecessary.
Adult Written bySantiesl December 22, 2018


Loved everything about the movie.
Adult Written byTom Huff December 19, 2018

A Really good Sequel

The Children will have a good time and it bring tears to the Adults. I loved it.
Adult Written by[email protected] December 19, 2018

Practically perfect in every way!

Amazing! I am a die hard Mary Poppins fan- I was skeptics at first; how could anyone perform Mary Poppins anywhere as perfect as dame Julie Andrews did? Emily blunt certainly has! Everything she did reminded me of Julie Andrews take on the first Mary Poppins, but she also added an extra kick to the character as well. In short, she made it her own.
The special effects were awesome; I particularly enjoyed keeping with the older special effects mixed in with the new.
The new soundtrack was amazing as well. I already have songs stuck in my head-particularly the song Royal Doutlton Music hall and A Cover is not The Book! I have to be honest, I was afraid I wouldn’t like the music -nothing tops a spoonful of sugar or superkalafragulisticexpealagocious- but like I said, the new music is equally as enjoyable-if not more!
This movie will definitely be in my treasured movie collection-I already can’t wait for it to come out on DVD!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byIsabella Xander... March 30, 2019

Predictable and more like Broadway than movie and if it was a 2nd part to the 1st mary poppins it failed horribly. The music was cheesy and the dancing was off and the kids were to rehearsed to a point that u knew it was just fake even the person playing mary poppins was fake. The only part i liked in it was the ending sitting through the movie i was just dying wanting to just burn the dvd because of how bad it was.

Dont get it or watch it. Its a waste of money and time.
Adult Written bymovieman48 March 23, 2019

Mary misses the mark

A total misfire. One thing that made the first movie so memorable was the songs. I walked out from the sequel not able to remember a single song. The script was leaden and despite good intentions Blunt nowhere matched Julie Andrews' charisma. And the only thing our lamplighter friend had in common with Dick van Dyke was the awful Cockney accent. Hopeless!
Adult Written byJake H January 7, 2019

Missed Opportunity

If one had never seen the original, this is still fairly disappointing - missing the mark on what kids and adults are looking for in a fun musical. The songs were not catchy - if asked right now, I can't even really note any of the tunes or lyrics for that matter. And the story-line was a bit shallow and scattered, and at times there were events that seemed to happen without even needing to - **soft spoiler** one scene in particular where Mary Poppins comes to the "rescue", only after standing there and watching others attempt to do the job for several minutes. There was definitely some entertainment value in it, and the acting by the main characters was good. I for one actually really liked Emily Blunt's version of Poppins - again, if we pretend the first one never existed.

Now that said, for those that have seen the original, here's what I have to say. Very disappointing. I believe for this to have worked - and had the potential to be it's own classic - it was far more critical for the movie to retain it's story telling consistency, rather than maintain any strict character consistency. Rather than a "return" this should have been a "passing the torch". For Disney to think that they could in fact have a new actress come and actually BE Mary Poppins, they must have taken one too many spoons full of the Rrrrrum Punch!. This movie would have worked much better if it was Carry Poppins (Mary's daughter... or something). And she comes to pick up where Mary left off. It might have paralleled the character shift similar to the Banks kids. They also missed the opportunity to tie in many of the magical marks of the original Poppins - take for instance the torn up Nanny Ad in the original. Mary would never have come if she hadn't received the request. This would have a been a much better call for Mary. The adult Michael could have torn something up and tossed it in the fireplace, and then Poppins sees it and knows there's trouble. There could have also been the use of the Measuring Tape to measure up the new kids. That would have been a fun element to grab back. Instead they try too hard to mimic similar characters (converting the funny-as-heck laughter scene from the original with Uncle Albert to a completely confusing romp with Cousin Topsy). It was a forced character. Not only that, but the charm of Bert's intro where he talks to the audience. And how he stands up for Michael's father in the original - very good moral guidance for the children. And speaking of morals, the original had a deeper meaning than simply filling a Nanny position. Mary was able to restore a family, helping the mother, father, and kids rethink their priorities (turning the dad toward the kids and the act of kindness to a homeless). "Return" simply lacks that depth.

Again, this was an entertaining film that kids might enjoy - albeit a little long. But wait for it on DVD.
Adult Written byzanedia January 1, 2019

Disappointing, Scary Moments & Dad Portrayed as Incompetent

My family enjoyed the original Mary Poppins, but the sequel is not worth watching. The movie opens with the family receiving an eviction notice. The main theme of the movie is that the father has not paid bills timely due to the death of his wife while the kids are attempting to rescue him from the eviction. There is a banker who is kind to the father, but trying to deceive him behind his back. There are some scary and tense scenes. There is also a scene where where Mary Poppins performs a song about books with some of the lyrics being to edgy for my family. Mary Poppins was portrayed as mean, rather than strict. We were hoping for a lighthearted singalong type movie and this did NOT deliver.
Adult Written bywjohnsto December 27, 2018

Mary Poppins Returns

The music was far inferior to the original film Mary Poppins. It was rather hard to listen to most of it and I would say it was downright poor. During the film there were inappropriate connotations in a few areas. The singers did not appear to have "singer quality" voices. The story was similar to the first Mary Poppins. However, the way it was presented was rather dry and boring. A lot of useless dancing about! This has to be the worst film I have seen in years. I don't think it would hold the attention of children as the plot is too long and drawn out. I'm very sorry I spent money on this useless movie. Other movie goers were not impressed on exit from this terrible film. I'm not sure what message they were trying to get across.

This title contains:

Positive role models
Parent of a 18+-year-old Written byJoshua H. December 27, 2018

No reason for this to be PG

It's a G movie. The MPAA is just lax. There was nothing inappropriate at all. It's on the same level as the original G movie.
Adult Written byKatfen December 27, 2018

Fun for the whole family

If you liked Mary Poppins, you'll enjoy this sequel. The colors of the movie are so bright and engaging a and the story is different enough from the original that the parents didn't get bored. The sequel had all the same elements as the first; a fun intro to Mary's never ending bag, a quirky friend to go and visit and even a cartoon scene drawn in the same fashion as the original ( the end of this scene was a little scary for the littles but the scary part turns out to be a dream). It was fun for the parents, the kids and the grandparents in my family. My only critique is the songs are not as catchy. The other big thing to consider is that the children have recently lost their mom and might not be a good option for children going through the same thing although the song they sing about losing their mom was very nice.
Adult Written bygrace.rainier December 26, 2018

Mary Poppins albeit much of Jack (Manuel)

While I thought the movie was done with all the Disney’s Magic’s however Manuel-Lin’s role was too much. I would prefer see more of Mary Poppins than Jack.
The title should have been Jack of Mary Poppins.
Adult Written byShannonrsaunder... December 24, 2018

Exceeded expectations

This was a feel good movie and an experience... it was the reason you want to go to the movies! Blunt owned it! It was so entertaining and magical - we all loved it!
Parent of a 6-year-old Written byNydreamer29 December 24, 2018

Absolutely delightful

I took my five year old (almost six) to see this and she was absolutely enthralled from beginning to end. Emily Blunt is incredible as Mary Poppins with facial expressions and comedic timing that were on on point. Lin-Manuel Miranda sparkles on screen with a terrible in his eye and contagious smile. The scenes with magic delighted my daughter. The adults loved the call backs to the original including some great cameos. We were prewarned that there was a scary scene with wolves, so we timed a bathroom break with that. Nothing else was overly scary. The songs were reminiscent of the original. When it was over, my daughter wanted to watch it all over again!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 8-year-old Written byGerald Z. December 23, 2018

Terribly made copy job of the original film. Emily Blunt is horrible as Mary Poppins.

Emily Blunt was a killer cop in Sicario. What are they thinking? She's nothing like Julie Andrews here and she is downright scary at times! The film is all over the place in terms of the plot and the songs. Don't waste your money on this film.

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Adult Written byGrandma Mo December 23, 2018

Entertaining but predictable

I took my 8 and 12 year grandchildren and the older boy had not seen the original. I saw the original at its opening when I was 10. The 8 year old did not see the original but we read the book.
So, we came from different perspectives. They both said afterwards that they liked the movie.

My take? The beginning was almost boring. Emily Blunt had the look and mannerisms of the book character. I had never seen Lin-Manuel Miranda before (Jack) and I seriously thought he was the main character instead of Mary Poppins. I’m not complaining because he is charismatic and very good. I was just surprised that his character was on the screen more often or seemed to be then Mary. The music was not catchy but the lyrics were excellent. I didn’t think those cartoon characters- the ones that stole the giraffe- were necessary to the plot at all and that segment should be edited out. I thought the actor who played Michael was miscast. He just lacked a lot to make the audience care. The children were believable especially Georgie. The chemistry between Jack and Jane was obvious but I couldn’t help thinking how could he financially support an eventual marriage on a lamplighters salary.

Once the first 30 minutes were over the rest of the movie flowed better. I figured out where the bank shares were right from the beginning. I knew Dick vanDyke was in the movie but the highlight for me was the balloon lady(won’t spoil that). She was the “cherry on top” for the best part of the movie.

I liked the tribute touches to the original movie. I believe people and kids who had not seen the original would enjoy this one more then those of us who had seen the original. I just felt overall that this one lacked the overall warmth and charm of the characters, story and music of Mary Poppins the movie. Gallant attempt though.