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Disney In Depth: Mary Poppins Blu-ray Review
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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"Mary Poppins" Blu-ray Cover

Mary Poppins
2-Disc Blu-ray/DVD/Digital | DVD/Digital l Instant
Directed by Robert Stevenson
Starring Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, David Tomlinson, Glynis Johns, Karen Dotrice, Matthew Garber and Ed Wynn
Walt Disney Home Entertainment
Release Date: Dec. 10, 2013

Mary Poppins, the winner of five Academy Awards, flies onto Disney Blu-ray for the first time ever in honor of its (premature) 50th anniversary and the forthcoming release of Saving Mr. Banks. But is the Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke musical practically perfect in every way? The film, yes. The Blu-ray release itself, only practically, as the less-than-perfect presentation and lack of copious new supplemental material have much to be desired.

Critics and everyday individuals alike regard Poppins as one of Walt Disney’s finest achievements – if not his finest piece of cinema – for what the movie represented back in 1964, and how it holds up today. The film, inspired by the P.L. Travers work, showcases how the family dynamic of an early 20th-century clan in London is transformed by the introduction of one very ideal, precise and magical nanny. The tale captured our imaginations, portraying an atmosphere where children could leap into sidewalk drawings and a fantastic woman could soar above the cityscape with an umbrella and carpetbag in tow. The scene, utterly delightful. The people, certainly relatable. The combo, undeniably winning. But what makes Mary Poppins work so well? Credit a combination of elements at play.

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D23 Expo: Richard Sherman Plays The Disney Songbook
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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Disney D23 Expo: B.J. Novak, Richard Sherman, Jason Schwartzman

Richard Sherman played a ton of his legendary Disney songs during the D23 Expo in Anaheim, CA this weekend. Here are some video highlights of the major Disney occasion, drawing thousands of attendees and encouraging even more memories.

Richard Sherman 1960’s film medley

Check out this video that shares snippets of 1960’s favorites from features like The Jungle Book, Winnie the Pooh, and The Parent Trap.

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Watch Now: Tom Hanks Becomes Walt Disney In First Trailer For ‘Saving Mr. Banks’
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The Movie God   |  @   |  
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Saving Mr. Banks Image

The first trailer for Disney’s Saving Mr. Banks, which sees the great Tom Hanks becoming the man behind the mouse, Walt Disney, has been released online.

The movie tells the story of Disney’s often futile efforts to obtain the rights to make a movie based on the P.L. Travers (played by Emma Thompson) book Mary Poppins. Disney promised his daughters he would make the movie, but did not anticipate Travers’ strict refusal to allow her work to be transferred to the silver screen.

You can read a full description of Saving Mr. Banks and check out the first trailer for the movie below now!

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Disney In Depth: Soundtrack Review: ‘Everybody Wants To Be A Cat’
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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Disney In Depth banner

"Everybody Wants To Be A Cat" album coverMore than a year ago, Walt Disney Records released a soundtrack to little fanfare within the general music community, but rightfully deserves some attention. Collect a bunch of famous Disney tunes and gather some jammin’ jazz artists. Spin the two together and your creation is an awesome assortment of standards breathing new energy. Here is my review of Disney Jazz Volume 1: Everybody Wants To Be A Cat.

1. “Ev’rybody Wants To Be A Cat” by Roy Hargrove: The Grammy-winning trumpeter lends his potent musical skills into mixing up this classic tune from The Aristocats. While the first minute or so of the five-minute cover closely resembles the jazzy piece, he then spins some impressive arrangements. I could imagine listening to this strong instrumentation in a coffeehouse or lounge. Though it steers off in a different direction for much of the entirety, Hargrove returns to the memorable theme toward the end.

2. “Chim Chim Cher-Ee” by Esperanza Spalding: The artist who prevailed over teen sensation Justin Bieber at the 2011 Grammys as the “Best New Artist” adeptly takes control over the Sherman Brothers’ legendary melody. The orchestration possesses a French flair, with some light piano and accordion in the background at different points. Spalding scats with beautiful range in this romantic version that still stirs up a chilling sensation. Guesses are that if Dick Van Dyke has heard Spalding’s take on the piece, he would be pretty proud.

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