It’s 53 years since the original Mary Poppins first hit our screens. This year she’s back to visit the grown-up Banks children in a Disney musical that will have you swinging from every lamp post on the street. Musicals not your thing? Here are 5 reasons why you should reconsider.
1. Nostalgia is good for you
Revisiting the world created by Mary Poppins is a great opportunity to take a trip down memory lane. How old were you when the first film came out? Or if you’re young enough to have missed it, you must remember watching the repeats as a child.
Research shows that revisiting pleasures from the past – like watching a favourite childhood movie – is actually good for your health. That’s right, watching the new Mary Poppins movie will flood your system with endorphins, boosting your immune system and helping you fight off the plague – aka the Christmas cold everyone in your family is nursing.
2. Dancing does wonders for your waist
Don’t like musicals? Oh come on, don’t be such a killjoy. With titles like ‘Trip a little light fantastic’, the new songs are certainly inspired by the original movie. In fact Lin-Manuel Miranda, who plays Jack the lamplighter in Poppins Returns says, “This score is such a love letter…to the original, it’s a joy to be a part of it.”
If that doesn’t convince you, think of the rewards you’ll reap from joining in with the kids or grandkids as they dance around the kitchen at home. Better to embrace the magic of musical theatre than keel over from the after effects of the season’s excesses. But take it steady – you don’t want to break any fine china…
3. Singing is excellent for your health
While on the subject of musicals, how’s your tenor shaping up? Because one thing you can be sure of is that the new Mary Poppins features just the kind of songs that stick in your head only to re-emerge when you’re driving, out for a walk, doing the garden etc.
According to Sarah Rainey, writing for The Telegraph: “singing has been shown to boost our immune system, reduce stress levels and…help patients cope with chronic pain.” She went on to say that: “A joint study by Harvard and Yale Universities in 2008 went one step further, claiming that choral singing in a Connecticut town had increased residents’ life expectancy.”
Doubtless you still remember the lyrics to ‘Chim Chim Cher-ee’? All we can say is be prepared to add to the list of songs that drive you nuts. But hey, singing is good for you so ignore strange looks at the traffic lights and belt it out!
4. Reminds you that classic clothes are always stylish
Set in Edwardian England, Mary Poppins offers a showcase of the sort of buttoned up, mirror polished sartorial elegance that formed the backbone of the former British Empire.
Think tweed jackets, flat caps – perhaps a nice pair of brogues. Classic tailoring never really goes out of fashion, and Mary Poppins proves it. One wonders what the eponymous housekeeper would make of our current constitutional crisis. “A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down?”
5. Kids will love it
If the thought of watching Mary Poppins descending from the sky via umbrella fills you with horror, then perhaps you need to loosen up. Similarly, should you feel tempted to bluster about the idiocy of relying on said umbrella to make a safe landing, think before you speak.
It’s worth remembering how much you enjoyed musicals before you were old enough to know better. Suspend your disbelief for an afternoon. With rave reviews, Mary Poppins Returns offers a little bit of magic in an all-too-brutal world – take the kids or grandkids to see it, and breathe new life into your own inner child.
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