Nanny McPhee Returns Movie Poster Image

Nanny McPhee Returns



Fantasy isn't as enchanting as original, but it's still fun.
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Family and Kids
  • Release Year: 2010
  • Running Time: 106 minutes

What parents need to know

Educational value

Through Nanny McPhee's lessons to the children, young viewers will learn the importance of working with others, following their instincts, and standing up for what they believe and the people they love.

Positive messages

Nanny McPhee's charges learn to work together, share, act courageously, be selfless, never lose faith, and love each other. It's a strongly positive message for all kids.

Positive role models

Although the two uncles aren't positive role models (nor are they intended to be), the women (save for the missing aunt) all are: Mrs. Green is patient, kind, and loving, always going out of her way to help Mrs. Docherty and please her children and niece and nephew. Nanny McPhee herself proves that beauty isn't dictated physically, but rather by what your character has to offer those around you.

Violence & scariness

Comic violence includes people getting swept up by a sudden gust of wind; a bird expanding and looking like he's about to burst (but he doesn't); kids pushing, shoving, and fighting with each other; and a man being told that he's going to be "stuffed" as penalty for not repaying a loan.

Sexy stuff

Two kisses between a married couple, and some comic flirting between the hit-women and their target.


Very infrequent use of "hell" and "oh my God." Also, the cousins call each other names like "savages," " "awful," and the like. Other insults include "weak-willed," "cock and bull," "wicked," and "rotten."

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this fantasy sequel is a great choice for families. The on-screen kids fight and misbehave a lot until Nanny McPhee disciplines them; ultimately, they learn important lessons about being helpful, selfless, and brave. Violence is limited to physical comedy gags like a bird that nearly explodes and two women who look harmless but are actually hit-women. One of the subplots involves a relative who's in the hole for so much money that he tries to bully his sister-in-law to sell her share of the farm.

What's the story?

Isabel Green (Maggie Gyllenhaal) is desperately trying to juggle the demands of her war-deployed husband's farm, her three rambunctious-but-sweet kids, and the arrival of her posh niece and nephew from London. After a particularly awful day when the snooty cousins arrive at the farm, Nanny McPhee (Emma Thompson) appears in all of her snaggle-toothed, hairy-mole-sporting glory to provide Isabel some much-needed relief and teach the kids how to cooperate rather than annoy each other. Adding some dramatic tension to the story is the fact that while Mr. Green (Ewan McGregor) is at war, his brother Phil (Rhys Ifans) has wracked up an insurmountable gambling debt to a mysterious female loan shark and wants Isabel to sign away her share of the farm.

Is it any good?


Because the story is so predictable, there's not much mystery as to how things will turn out, but kids won't care because they'll be too busy enjoying it. They'll be laughing at the flying and swimming piglets, the animal sleepover, and the kids hitting themselves comically until they stop fighting with each other. The magic of the NANNY McPHEE tale is that it's completely derivative (in an endearing way!) of childhood favorites like Mary Poppins and Babe, with a little bit of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang thrown in for extra flying-vehicle fun. Thompson, who also wrote and produced the movie, is obviously comfortable in the governess role and working with children, and her scenes with the kids are amusing. Gyllenhaal -- whose accent is surprisingly pleasant -- is no Colin Firth, but she's lovely and sweet, and you can't help but cheer for her and her friend, the forgetful Mrs. Docherty (Maggie Smith).

Other aspects of the movie, however, fall flat -- like the window putty-eating bird, the sweet-but-creepy hit-women, and the annoying Uncle Phil (Ifans), who keeps popping up again and again. But there are a couple of fantastic cameos from men who are no doubt Thompson's friends (McGregor and Ralph Fiennes). Their mere presence in the movie is a delight, especially the great Fiennes as a stiff War Office VIP who's the stand-offish father to the London cousins. Speaking of the cousins, they're appropriately naughty at first and then adorably friendly with each other. The end is particularly sentimental, because there's a tie-in to the first film, leaving open the possibility that Nanny McPhee will strike yet again.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what Nanny McPhee means by her rule that when kids want her but don't need her, she must go. How does it affect the family she's with?

  • How do the cousins impact each other? At first they're at each other's throats, but eventually they grow to work together and even love each other. What changes their relationship?

  • How does Nanny McPhee's specific sort of magic allow her subjects to figure out their own problems?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:August 20, 2010
DVD/Streaming release date:December 14, 2010
Cast:Emma Thompson, Ewan McGregor, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Maggie Smith
Director:Susanna White
Studio:Universal Pictures
Genre:Family and Kids
Topics:Book characters
Run time:106 minutes
MPAA rating:PG
MPAA explanation:rude humor, some language and mild thematic elements

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Kid, 10 years old May 30, 2011


I think that this movie is pretty pathetic, A kid would NEVER be able to disfuse a bomb! and anyway, I think that if "Nanny mc Phee" Was real then she would simply be arrested for child abuse! [Ok maybe she would get her stick] But in a word Pathetic
Kid, 10 years old August 30, 2010

PG for a reason. saw the movie,here is some of the scenes from the movie...

im going to b explaining this: first scene: they show their (ugly) home and animals pooping on the farm and yelling and "get off the furniture because i want the house to look nice for our rich cousins" towards the next scene: all the items in a shop start talking and saying "THE PERSON YOU NEED IS NANNY McPHEE" and also before that part,there is more bratty rich cousins realizing when they step out of the car they will be stepping in animal poop...and the diva-like young daughter is FIGHTING to stay in the car. after her clothes are dropped and ruined, there is a scene shortly after they are in the house where the cousin (boy) gets 'dad's jam' which is a jar of jelly they took years\months to make and opens it when they say put it back and then slides it across the table and breaks it to pieces. they are then violently fighting in another scene where the mom can't individually handle the children herself so nanny mcPhee appears magically and greets the kids upstairs,(she greets the mom first). it may be a bit intense for young children whenever they are fighting when the camera people show a better view of it. nanny mcPhee then says,"stop fighting" and also a kid throws this paper thing in a fire. they don't listen SO SHE WHIPS OUT HER CANE AND BANGS IT!!! -it pauses everything,and a black bird can then get the paper thing out of the fire instead of making the kid do it (which is why she is upset at him). she also would make them fight themselves instead of fight others. she said she wouldnt make it stop unless they said they were sorry like they meant it. they then said they were sorry and she made it stop and she went downstairs and told the mom lesson 1,stop fighting,was complete. then they obeyed her when she said to go to bed. but they were having trouble with that and they were saying "ID RATHER SHARE WITH A GOAT" or "ID RATHER SHARE WITH AN ELEPHANT" so she magically makes a goat and elephant sleep with the kids who said that. they said that since they didnt want to share with someone else (human). one of the kids wouldnt have to share a bed. then in the morning,she blows a loud trumpet to wake them up and says "out of bed get dressed and downstairs for breakfast on the double"(right now). well whenever all the kids are downstairs except one cousin (the girl) they find her in the kids moms dress (not hers)she said it was the only nice thing for her to wear cause her other clothes got covered in poop. they were then telling her how she cant wear that and all. when they got to the farm, the piglets were gone. so they had to chase the piglets (my favorite part of the movie). nanny mcPhee used her magical cane to make the pigs "fly",climb trees,and swim in a fanciful way. yet they still didnt catch the pigs. so the cousin (boy)'s strategy was to use an important part of the dress she was wearing to catch the pigs. they showed the mom the pigs they had caught,but she was upset about what they had used to get the pigs. i cannot remember much more. PLEASE give this a "helped me decide" or "had useful details" :D P.S. i gave itage 9+ cause of the violence (pretty mild though).
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent of a 6 and 9 year old Written byAquiladog August 25, 2010
Predictable, delightful, fun. Children get to watch children struggle and overcome challenges and the magical parts are goofy and funny. It drags a bit in spots for the adults... but the children are happy throughout and at the its a winner for the family.
What other families should know
Great messages