29 November 2013 7:38 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

There's a sorry lack of spark between Thompson and Hanks, but then this is a Disney film about Mary Poppins

Next year sees the 50th anniversary of one of Walt Disney's personal masterpieces, Mary Poppins, and here's the curtain raiser from Disney Studios. It's entertaining, if exasperating; a cleverly configured and officially sanctioned drama about unofficial negotiations behind the scenes in 1961.

Only a Disney release would have the trademark rights and only a Disney movie would have been permitted the liberty of representing the great man himself.

It is the dance of seduction between the wily old master – who had been angling for decades to get the film rights to Mary Poppins – and its British author Pl Travers, who was imperious, cantankerous and suspicious of Disney of America. The folksy-yet-shrewd showman and emotionally vulnerable schoolmarm are enjoyably played by Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson.

Since Saving Mr Banks premiered at »

- Peter Bradshaw

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