Synopsis: "Mary Poppins Returns" is a musical fantasy. All grown up, the Banks siblings must save their childhood home from foreclosure by Mr. Wilkins from the bank, along with raising Michael's three children after his wife died. They must find the proof of certificate shares left to them by their father to resolve the debt before the deadline. Mary Poppins returns with her magical ways to serve as their in-house nanny. She's joined by Jack the Gaslighter and cousin Topsy as helpers of the family.
Warning: Spoilers within the Presentation
Welcome to "Conscious Movie Reviews." I'm your host Joy Davis and here to review the musical fantasy, "Mary Poppins Returns." My special thanks to Michael Sheridan, a world-renowned dream interpreter for sharing his insights about the film.
Within the Banks household, siblings Jane and Michael, now a widow with children, are confronted by two emergencies: a burst water pipe and lawyers at the door with a notice of repossession from being three months behind in payments. They have until Friday at midnight to pay the bank back or lose their home.
Acting responsibly, Michael's daughter Annabel called the plumber for them.
Whenever you are dealing with a broken water pipe, it's often an outer sign that there's an overflow of problems in your life. Michael's proactive daughter was quick to handle a crisis while he had a meltdown revealed a reversal of family dynamics. It's really Michael and Jane who are the children.
While Jane helps her brother locate the shares certificate left by their father to cover the loan, Michael laments the loss of his wife. "The magic vanished since you went away," he sang. "It's a house full of questions...Kids need explanations...Even the cherry trees forgot to bloom."
Raised by aloof parents who restricted their personality, both became needy and child-like, lacking the inner strength to shoulder responsibility. Michael, the starving artist, relied on his wife for years to pay the bills on time.
As they rummaged through the attic, Michael tossed their green kite away, even after Jane reminded him of how much, as kids, they use to love flying it. Unbeknownst to them, the certificate was on the back side of the kite.
A kite is often associated with the carefree days of childhood. Colored green, it represented money - specifically financial freedom for Michael and Jane with the certificate on it so they can "pull their own strings." Because a kite is free-flowing, yet tethered, it's a lesson about balancing their free spirits with being grounded in a mature way to their responsibilities.
Michael's youngest son Georgie chased after the wind-swept kite with help from Jack, a cockney gas lighter. Pulling on its string, the clouds parted for Mary Poppins to gently fly down with a carpet bag and umbrella towards them.
In this scene, the gust of wind represents the "winds of change" to shift the Banks' dire circumstances. Carrying an umbrella, it often symbolizes security and support that Mary offers, along with her "bag of tricks" that she draws from.
By coming down from the sky, Mary is likened to a "winged soul" who can teach the Banks how to take flight from the hardships of life by being emotionally resilient.
As a gaslighter, Jack was also a positive influence. He taught by example that if you would just embrace the dark, embrace the gloom, the spark in your heart can light the way by being your own luminary.
When Mary showed up at the house, Michael and Jane were also in shocked disbelief, like the Banks children earlier by her unusual arrival at the park. Even though they've shared many magical moments with their former nanny, both agreed that it never really happened.
By dismissing any magic in their lives, Michael and Jane practiced "gaslighting" - a form of psychological manipulation to sow seeds of doubt about their fantastical memories of Mary Poppins, then doing the same towards the kids to question their reality
As the in-house nanny, Mary organized a bubble bath that lead to an undersea adventure. All abuzz from having a magical experience, their father was cross towards them from being stressed out. He couldn't find the certificate.
Mary's return was really about reconnecting the Banks with their inner child - the source of our enthusiasm, possibility thinking, and joy in the little things of life. Michael lost his way after the death of his wife. He needed to not only mature into an emotionally healthy adult, but also integrate with his child-like self.
Heading for the bank's safety deposit box, it was empty. Michael and Jane requested an extension of payment from Mr. Wilkins, the president, but was denied. He hid his real intent to repossess their home by tearing out any records of their shares.
By having Banks as the family name and dealing with a bank foreclosure, it all relates to karma that records your lifetime of debits or credits, like a financial institution, and resolving any karmic debts incurred.
Michael, the eldest son, came up with a novel idea of selling their mother's china bowl to save the house. They were once told that it's priceless.
When the porcelain cracked from being mishandled, the painted characters came to life for the kids to see that they've also broken a carriage wheel. Mary spun the bowl so they can enter the animated world.
It was an easy fix. At the "Royal Doulton Music Hall," the kids enjoyed a musical dance number called "A Cover is Not the Book", except Georgie. He was secretly lured, then abducted by a wolf and his gang. The chase was on to save their little brother.
A cracked bowl and singing about "A Cover is Not the Book" referred to how surface appearances are not what they seem, especially when it's cracked to reveal Wilkins' true character as the "wolf at your door" - a greedy money collector who's after the family home.
The kids flew out the bowl through another crack made, only to find themselves awake in bed from what seemed like a shared nightmare, but all too real.
Taking the bowl in for repair work, Mary's cousin Topsy told them they had bad timing. Every second Wednesday is when her world is literally turned upside down, like a "turning turtle," she explained. Topsy agreed to fix it, but it wasn't priceless in market value like the kids believed.
Going flippity flop was a means for the kids to gain a new perspective. They were being raised to have a rigid mindset that can leave them narrow minded and emotionally inflexible like their father. Topsy represented whole brained thinking that's holistic. By having a wider viewpoint that includes its opposite, you can come up with well-rounded solutions to your problems.
Michael and Jane found the certificate of shares on the back of the kite.
Getting closer to the deadline, the lamplighters did their best to turn back time. Unable to reach the hand of Big Ben, Mary flew overhead, moving it back with her umbrella. This gave the Banks an extra five minutes before midnight.
The scene at Big Ben revealed that Mary Poppins had an ability to rise above the time and space track to work from a field of possibilities. This is also what the ancient Greeks understood as the moment when Chronos, meaning linear time, intersects with Kairos, God's time that's timeless, for something profound and potentially life-changing to happen. This also explains how serendipity works in our life.
Rushing to the bank, Michael and Jane flew their kite in front of Wilkins' window and into his office. He noticed their proof of shares was on it, except for one missing piece that held the certificate owner's signature. Michael didn't care anymore about losing the house because his children are what he valued the most.
All was not lost when Wilkins' uncle, Mr. Dawes, Jr., appeared from the other room to let them know that the tuppens deposited by their father years ago had grown considerably from compounding interest to pay off their mortgage. They can keep the house and shares. Because many customers, like the Banks, were swindled for profit, Wilkins was fired immediately - a show of good karma in action.
At a carnival, an old lady offered balloons for all, including the Banks family. She advised them to choose carefully. Each one took flight, including their heart, to experience for the first time what it's like as "winged souls". Mary Poppins' work with them was now done.