The movie: Saving Mr. Banks (Disney)
When it was available: March 18, 2014
What it’s about: Once upon a time, a snarky old Aussie-turned-Brit wrote a book about a nanny/nursemaid named Mary Poppins. Walt Disney’s daughters fell in love with the story and he promised to make it into a film. The one problem? The author (P.L. Travers) wouldn’t give him the film rights. Twenty years of wooing later, she finds herself in California with two songwriters, a screenplay writer and Walt himself. She makes their lives a living hell, and we soon find out why; her relationship to the Mary Poppins character is a real one. Set amidst tragic circumstances. Be sure to watch through the credits at the end for an actual audio recording of one of the first meetings Travers has with the Disney crew!
The verdict? If you’re a die-hard Mary Poppins fan, you’ll want this for your collection. Otherwise, rent it. But definitely do, because it’ll be worth the two hours you spend with it. Historians, biography buffs and music-lovers will surely enjoy it as much as I did. Emma Thompson should have won an award for this role, and Tom Hanks makes a very charming Walt Disney.