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Nanny McPhee
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Reviews & Ratings for
Nanny McPhee More at IMDbPro »

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186 out of 210 people found the following review useful:

Don't let the trailers fool you

8/10
Author: verdie from Eugene, OR
31 January 2006

I almost missed this one because I was turned off by the commercials and previews, with their emphasis on the silliest parts (the dancing donkey, etc.). What a mistake that would have been -- I'd have missed one of the driest, archest, loveliest scripts in years. Emma Thompson can do more with a slightly quirked eyebrow and a quiet "Hm" than most actresses can with an entire Shakespearean soliloquy. The whole cast, children and adults alike, is pretty near perfect, some of the best of the British theater even in the tiniest roles (Derek Jacobi, Imelda Staunton et al). The kids are tough and tart, without a simper in the lot, unlike most US child stars.

Don't let the trailers keep you away -- this is well worth seeing, sort of what Lemony Snicket should have been but wasn't.

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154 out of 199 people found the following review useful:

Perfect escapism!

9/10
Author: pam-146 from United Kingdom
9 October 2005

Saw the film this morning at a Sunday Times preview and I'd like to think that more than a few of you will be eating your words when you see the finished product. It's beautifully put together, with lots of humour, the attractive Colin Firth and many superb performances. Celia Imrie creates a colourful character in Mrs Quickly, Imelda Staunton is fantastic as the cook (Mrs Blatherwick) and Angela Lansbury is expertly cast as Aunt Adelaide (despite the feathered dress making her look like a turkey!) As guessed at on another thread, Nanny McPhee does teach the children - that manners matter, you should be responsible for your actions, and that actions have consequences. It isn't dumbed down, there's certainly no 'dopey dialogue' - and there's also no annoying Americanisms as beset Charlie & the Chocolate Factory.

At first glance, you could imagine Emma Thompson giving a very over the top performance, given the warts, over-sized nose and tooth. Instead she gives a careful and considered performance - everything in the right measure.

Enjoy Nanny McPhee for what it is - a large dose of magical escapism with plenty of laughs for good measure. A few rude words and food fights to keep the kids (and parents) happy, oh and a dancing donkey, but overall a film that is lots of fun. Can't wait for the DVD.

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116 out of 134 people found the following review useful:

Enchanting

10/10
Author: moirazollinger from United Kingdom
26 November 2005

I went to see this film today with my daughter, who is 31 and her 5 year old daughter and it's a long time since I saw such a truly wonderful film in the cinema.(and I go often)

I went as a typical granny, ready to enjoy the day out for what it was, but I said to my daughter at the end that if it had been a DVD, I would happily have watched it again right away.

Apart from the brilliant performances from all involved, this was a beautifully filmed piece of work. The staging and vivid colours used were absolutely perfect and each set was full of things to catch your eye.

I've always liked Emma Thompson, but not in a 'big fan' kind of way, but I must say she gave one of the most understated, beautifully controlled performances, and her wonderful character was magically endearing within moments of her arrival on the scene.

I thought hard before giving a rating for this film, but couldn't find one thing to stop it from being absolutely perfect.

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62 out of 67 people found the following review useful:

Excellent family fun!

8/10
Author: Mel J from Dundee, Scotland
29 October 2005

This definitely has to be one of the best films of the year and is something that can be enjoyed by the whole family, from the wee tot to grandparents. Based upon the 'Nurse Matilda' books by Christianna Brand, the film revolves around seven motherless children who have frightened off seventeen nannies much to their over-wrought father's dismay. The children are unruly and their father has his own stresses of desperately searching for a wife before his mean-spirited great aunt cuts off his allowance and everything is falling apart at the seams...until Nanny McPhee enters the house to sort things out. Think of 'Mary Poppins' if Roald Dahl had written the character and you have an idea of what happens next!

The best thing about this film is that while it will appeal to children, it doesn't dumb down or indulge in cavity-inducing sweetness that you tend to see in films produced by Hollywood. There is much humour and fun to be had but there is also a darker tone, what with children being threatened with the Work House and their father speaking to corpses!

The actors are all excellent. Colin Firth was perfect as this dithering man who may be meek but will do anything for his children and Emma Thompson is totally unrecognisable as the lead character of Nanny McPhee (she also deserves much recognition her skills in script-writing this film). But it's Angela Lansbury, as snooty Great Aunt Adelaide, who steals the show with the way she spends much of the film with such a sour face that could curdle the milk! The children also deserve much praise, especially when you consider most of them are not only very young but had never acted before. I certainly hope to see more of young Raphael Coleman, who played the middle son Eric, in future films as he totally threw himself into his character and was the most engaging of the children.

I'd highly recommend this to people who enjoyed 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' (both old and new versions) and 'Matilda'. I doubt many will be disappointed with this film!

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58 out of 64 people found the following review useful:

good fun!

10/10
Author: kelly walker from United States
30 January 2006

I took my almost-4-year-old and her two cousins (age 3 and 6) to see this and we all had a wonderful time! The cast was outstanding - Colin Firth marvelously befuddled, Angela Lansbury wonderfully austere, Emma Thompson gruesomely wise and endearing, and all of the children sweet and mischievous without being cloying and horrible. It was clever and never "dumbed down" as some movies peddled as family fare are these days. This film was both funny and touching. The scenery and costumes were also wonderful to look at -lovely use of color. Some reviews have said that the movie tries too hard to appeal to adults, but I disagree. If preschoolers can enjoy it, most children will. I highly recommend it to audiences of all ages.

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76 out of 113 people found the following review useful:

Perfect for kids, plenty of fun for the adults

8/10
Author: brotherfallout from London, England
9 October 2005

Seven children, seventeen nannies. Poor dad Cedric Brown (Colin Firth) has all but given up. Suddenly, enter Nanny McPhee (Emma Thompson) using her magical powers (both emotionally and literally) to kick them into shape. Remind you of something? I'd be concerned if it didn't. But thankfully, as Nanny McPhee progresses, it twists and turns in such a pleasant fashion that by the end, you'll be wondering 'Mary who?' Adapted for the screen by Thompson herself, this is a fun and inventive kids film that is guaranteed to make you smile. Firth does his usually stuttering British man shtick, but given he has little to do, makes the most of it. Imedla Staunton, Angela Lansbury and Celia Imrie ham it up shamelessly and are loads of fun. But most of the attention should be directed towards Thompson, an ugly but constantly entertaining lead.

The art direction, visual effects and Patrick Doyle's fabulous score all soar in a confident over-the-top direction, as is the tone of the film. The score, by-the-books though it may be, is perfect and bodes well for Doyle's work on the new Harry Potter movie.

Rather than basing its entirety on the naughty kids storyline, McPhee jumps from plot point to plot point, stuffing a whole lotta characters and twists into it's 97 minute running time. Thanks to this, Thompson's endearing loveliness and a cute array of kids (lead by Thomas Sangster, the kid from Love Actually), Nanny McPhee emerges triumphant as one of the better kids movies in recent memory, mostly because the adults will love it too. And anyone who isn't enchanted by the magical ending has to have a stone for a heart.

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77 out of 117 people found the following review useful:

Truly Moving Picture

10/10
Author: tollini from United States
21 January 2006

This film was specially shown on January 17, 2006 in Indianapolis. I am one of the judges for the Heartland Film Festival that screens films for their Truly Moving Picture Award. A Truly Moving Picture "…explores the human journey by artistically expressing hope and respect for the positive values of life." Heartland gave that award to this film.

There are seven rather naughty children who have creatively and gleefully drove away seventeen nannies who tried to tame them. But they have met their match with the hideous looking Nanny McPhee played by Emma Thompson. Thompson wrote the screenplay and with great make-up plays Nanny McPhee. Thompson is a consummate artist and is the only person ever to have won an Oscar for writing ("Sense and Sensibility") and also to have won an Oscar for acting ("Howard's End). Thompson brings class to this Victorian-era, dark, fractured fairy tale.

This is a laugh out loud farce. And young people and old can share in the humor. While the film is designed for kids, the adult accompanying the child will enjoy it almost as much.

There are positive messages, for parent and child, throughout the film. The seven children are taught to listen and to be courteous and to be responsible and to think through things for themselves, and you watch their behavior evolve. In the beginning, goodness looks ugly to the children. But as they learn what goodness truly is, it takes on a beautiful appearance.

FYI – There is a Truly Moving Pictures web site where there is a listing of past Truly Moving Picture Award winners that are now either at the theater or available on video.

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42 out of 54 people found the following review useful:

This is a wonderfully, imaginative movie for people of all ages.

10/10
Author: ahsat25 from United States
26 January 2006

This movie has a wonderful quality that would bring any distant family together. My children and I loved watching it together. It's nice to have a movie finally come out that everyone can enjoy. I highly recommend seeing it. Emma Thompson is so endearing. Colin Firth is such a lost soul trying to avoid everything and everyone around him. Angela Landsbury is so over the top, but very funny. Together they make such an interesting trio. The love, the comedy, the magic, and the unbelievable happy ending make it more than just a fairy tale, they make it a story that makes you wish that it was all happening to you. For children, it sets their minds imaginations into over-drive. It sends them to a place that lets their minds run free to believe in everything on the big screen in front of them. For just an adult, I would say, it would be less special, as apposed to an adult who has children to watch get engaged with this magical movie.

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40 out of 51 people found the following review useful:

Great fun and entertainment!

9/10
Author: CarlyJFrederick from United States
30 January 2006

I took my children, ages 8 and 5, to see the movie over the weekend and I'd have to say that I enjoyed it every bit as much as they did. The character portrayed by Emma Thompson was simply wonderful. Even though she used her "magic" to get desired results from the children, all one had to do was look into her eyes and see the genuine compassion she felt for the children. The whole scenario with the fairy tale books and logic behind WHY the children misbehaved to much made them not nearly as bratty as one would have expected from such behavior and actually made me feel a bit sorry for them so they became almost likable in their attitudes. They weren't just "brats" for the sake of being brats; they had a genuine fear of losing their father which, ultimately would have happened had he married that harpie Mrs. Quimby.

My children absolutely loved the whole barnyard animal scene, especially the dancing donkey. Second to that was the food fight at the wedding. I found this movie to be appropriate for children of ALL ages and simply enjoyable for myself as well. I highly recommend this movie!!!

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39 out of 60 people found the following review useful:

You can't handle the tooth!

9/10
Author: JJ Brent (jjbrentmusic@yahoo.com) from United States
26 January 2006

What a breath of fresh air. I enjoyed Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events and this film's over-the-top storytelling reminded me of what I thought was lacking in that other film. There was much joy to be had. It really was a lot of fun and quite the breath of fresh air for children's movies since the slump between The Incredibles and now.

The actors are perfectly cast. So often children can only distract from a movie with very few turning in believable performances. Not the case here.

My only regret was the missed opportunity for the perfect tag-line...maybe they's take my idea for the DVD promotion...

"You can't handle the tooth!"

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