Mary Poppins Returns is deemed ‘practically perfect in every way’ as critics praise ‘show-stopping’ leading lady Emily Blunt in early reviews

Mary Poppins Returns has been branded ‘practically perfect in every way’ by critics following its world premiere. 

The iconic Disney character has returned to the big screen, with Emily Blunt bringing Mary Poppins to life once more, and the actress has received huge praise from critics as they shared their thoughts on the movie on social media on Friday.   

The new release sees her take on the role of Poppins as she returns to London, with many early reactions for the film tipping Emily for an Oscar nod and labelling it a ‘show-stopper’. 

Loved: Critics say Mary Poppins Returns is ‘practically perfect in every way’ following its world premiere, with many praising Emily Blunt for her portrayal of the iconic character

The world premiere for Mary Poppins Returns was held in Los Angeles on Thursday night with Emily and her actor husband John Krasinski leading the stars that turned out for the red-carpet event.

The movie takes place 25 years after the original and is set in 1930s London, as it follows Mary Poppins (played by Blunt) as she returns to the Banks siblings, Jane and Michael, following a family tragedy. 


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Dick Van Dyke is the only actor from the original Mary Poppins movie to return and plays the son, Mr Dawes Junior, of one of his original characters. 

It boasts a stellar cast including the likes of Meryl Streep, Julie Walters and Colin Firth and is set to be a hit on its release next month, as critics have branded the movie ‘a delightful journey down memory lane.’

Resounding praise: The Disney movie is set to be a huge hit after impressing critics following its world premiere in Los Angeles on Thursday night

As the social media embargo lifted for the movie following its premiere, many were quick to share their thoughts on Mary Poppins Returns on Twitter. 

Leading the praise was actor Josh Gad, who has previously worked with Disney on 2013 hit Frozen, as he simply tweeted a photo of the film’s poster and penned: ‘Believe the hype. Wow.’  

Many predicted the movie will receive many a nod this awards season, including an Oscar nomination, with writer and director Ben Mekler, tweeting: ‘The Oscar race just got a BIG shake-up, because #MaryPoppinsReturns is sheer joy. 

‘Some of the most effortlessly charming (and catchy!) songs, performances, and BMX stunts I’ve seen on film in ages. A sequel this late shouldn’t be this good and yet…it absolutely is. It’s magic.’

‘The Oscar race just got a BIG shake up’: Many have said they think Mary Poppins Returns will land itself with many awards nods

‘An instant classic’: Rotten Tomatoes Editor Jacqueline Coley branded the movie a ‘work of art’

Big success: Rotten Tomatoes Editor-in-Chief tipped a big awards season for Emily Blunt after her appearance as Mary Poppins

Exciting: Editor-in-Chief at The Dis Insider Skyler Shuler tipped Emily for Best Actress at the Academy Awards

He continued: ‘The world needed a movie like #MaryPoppinsReturns right about now and Rob Marshall DELIVERED. It’s an old-school entertainment with the kinds of thrills you used to have to attend an X-Games to find. A true gift from @DisneyStudios – and just in time for the holidays!

‘Thrilled to say that from Julie Andrews to Walt Disney to Mat Hoffman, #MaryPoppinsReturns not only lives up to what came before – it brings something fresh that feels at once timeless and timely. Also – MERYL!!!’

Rotten Tomatoes Editor Jacqueline Coley, meanwhile, shared her thoughts insisting the ‘awards landscape has been turned on its head’.

Highly anticipated: Mary Poppins Returns is a sequel to the original movie and is set in 1930s London, 25 years later 

She’s back! Emily portrays the magical nanny who returns to the Banks siblings following a personal tragedy

She penned: ‘Rob Marshall, Emily Blunt, @Lin-Manuel & co have crafted a magical transporting work of art. A story that is undeniably familar yet miraculously brand new. Tons of nods to the OG. The awards landscape has been turned on its head. #MaryPoppinsReturns is an instant classic!’  

Rotten Tomatoes Editor-in-Chief Joel Meares added: ‘So #MaryPoppinsReturns is so much excellence. Emily Blunt will get all the noms, Lin-Manuel win all the hearts, and the music will be in your head and on your playlist for months.’ 

Editor-in-Chief at The Dis Insider Skyler Shuler tipped Emily for Best Actress at the Academy Awards, as he said: ‘MARY POPPINS RETURNS is full of beautiful visuals, fantastic acting and musical sequences that will blow you away. Emily Blunt will get a nomination for Best Actress, and has a solid shot at winning. Fans of the first film will be pleased!’ 

Fan: Journalist Nick Kazden insisted the movie does the original Mary Poppins film ‘justice’

‘Emily Blunt is just perfection’: Actress Emily found herself at the forefront of most reviews, with critics praising her portrayal of Mary Poppins

‘A resounding success’: Feelin’ Film credited Emily for taking on Mary Poppins and making it just as great as Julie Andrews’ original

Many credited the film for staying true to its original and insisted that Emily was the perfect choice in re-creating the iconic role first made famous by Julie Andrews. 

Journalist Nick Kazden penned: #MaryPoppinsReturns is a freaking treat. I was really worried but man this movie is enjoyable as heck and pays the original justice. Emily Blunt is fierce and amazing and I think I’m in love.’

Film Critic Zach Pope added: ‘#MaryPoppinsReturns THE MAGIC IS BACK Emily Blunt is just perfection as Mary Poppins & every time she’s on screen I couldn’t help but have this big ole smile, the 2-D animation segment is BEAUTIFUL. The film gave me the magical feeling I felt the first time I went to Disneyland.’ 

Sharing the same sentiment, Feelin’ Film tweeted: #MaryPoppinsReturns is a delightful journey down memory lane full of uplifting messages and sound advice. The animation pops, the song & dance numbers sing, and Emily Blunt is as great as she could be taking over for the legend that is Julie Andrews. Overall a resounding success!’

Blunt was at the forefront of many of the reviews of Mary Poppins Returns and won resounding praise from critics, with many crediting the star for her ‘magical’ portrayal of the children’s nanny.   

Star of the show: Critics branded Emily the ‘perfect choice’ to fill Andrews’ shoes

Much-loved: Cinema Blend Associate Editor and Writer Stephen (Dirk) Libbey labelled Emily ‘magical’ in the movie

‘Heartwarming’ Writer Sarah El-Mahmoud claimed the movie is more like a re-make of the original but had nothing but good words to say

‘Emily Blunt is practically perfect!’: Founder/EIC of LegionofLeia.com Jenna Busch was full of praise for the Girl On The Train actress

Credit: Critc Kyle Arango insists Emily has made the character of Mary Poppins ‘her own’

Cinema Blend Associate Editor and Writer Stephen (Dirk) Libbey wrote: ‘Much like the Banks family, I didn’t realize how much I needed Mary Poppins back in my life until she arrived. Emily Blunt is magical. @Lin_Manuel is a joy. And wonderful to see Navckid Keyd acting again.’

Writer Sarah El-Mahmoud penned: ‘#MaryPoppinsReturns is a jolly nostalgia-high with a blend of whimsical and heartwarming musical numbers & moments. It does feel more like a remake than a sequel at its core but it’s a new good old-fashioned musical worthy of jumping back into. Blunt & Miranda are magic.’ 

Founder/EIC of LegionofLeia.com Jenna Busch was full of praise, as she said of Blunt: ‘I can finally say that I loved #MaryPoppinsReturns! Emily Blunt is practically perfect in every way! Also, @Disney needs to make branded tissues for every showing! So lovely!’ 

Critic Kyle Arango agreed: #MaryPoppinsReturns is practically perfect in every way. I felt as if I was transported to a world where anything is possible. It has that old Disney Magic that only the classics contain and to have that feeling again was so refreshing.

Creator and Film-maker EJ Moreno claimed: ‘The social embargo for #MaryPoppinsReturns has lifted and I have some feelings! The film is a showstopper! Disney pulled every trick out of the bag, and this is Rob Marshall’s best musical since Chicago.’

‘The film is a showstopper!’ Creator and Film-maker EJ Moreno claimed: ‘Disney pulled every trick out of the bag’

Big fan: Writer Courtney Howard insisted ‘Emily Blunt is perfect’

Senior Editor at Moviebill Silas Lesnick insisted: ‘#MaryPoppinsReturns is wonderful. It anticipates and miraculously evades any cynicism and leaves you in a state of joy’

Set for success: Mary Poppins Returns is set to hit cinemas as of December

Meanwhile, Film Critic and Writer Courtney Howard gushed: ‘#MaryPoppinsReturns ⁠is the warm, cozy comfort weight blanket we need right now – prescribed self-care that swaddles us in heartfelt sentiments. It respectfully balances nostalgia & modern tech, creating a joyful, eye-popping & immersive fantasy world. Emily Blunt is perfect.’

Senior Editor at Moviebill Silas Lesnick insisted: ‘#MaryPoppinsReturns is wonderful. It anticipates and miraculously evades any cynicism and leaves you in a state of joy.’ 

Some critics admitted that they didn’t enjoy Mary Poppins Returns as much as they’d hoped, but they still made sure to touch on Emily’s excellent portrayal in the movie – claiming the actress makes the movie.  

Film/TV Critic and Journalist Yolanda Machado wrote: ‘Sigh. I didn’t love #MaryPoppinsReturns. I was bored for the most part and, as a HUGE musical theater geek, the music was so-so. It lacked a song that just sticks to your soul. BUT Emily Blunt is fantastic, kids will love it & it will make a ton of money. Review on Cosmo soon!’

‘Emily is fantastic’: Some critics admitted that they didn’t enjoy Mary Poppins Returns as much as they’d hoped, but they still made sure to touch on Emily’s excellent portrayal in the movie

Honest: Senior Writer at Slash Film Ben Pearson claimed: ‘#MaryPoppinsReturns is…not for me. Emily Blunt is the only person who could have played that role’

Stellar cast: Alongside Blunt, Meryl Streep (above), Colin Firth, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Julie Walters appear in the film

Senior Writer at Slash Film Ben Pearson claimed: ‘#MaryPoppinsReturns is…not for me. Emily Blunt is the only person who could have played that role, and she does a commendable job. But the movie just attempts to recreate too much of the original, and totally fails to recapture its magic.’

Mary Poppins Returns is directed by Rob Marshall – best known for bringing Chicago: The Musical to life on the big screen in 2002 with Catherine Zeta Jones and Renee Zellweger. 

Emily is at the helm of the sequel, but shared her reservations at taking on the titular character.

She explained in an interview with Vanity Fair that her daughter Hazel, four, is ‘obsessed’ with the original Mary Poppins and she is worried Hazel won’t like her portrayal of the nanny. 

Mary Poppins Returns: Critics thoughts 

‘Believe the hype. Wow’ – Josh Gad, Actor

‘The Oscar race just got a BIG shake-up, because #MaryPoppinsReturns is sheer joy,’ – Ben Mekler, Writer and Director

‘The awards landscape has been turned on its head. #MaryPoppinsReturns is an instant classic!’ – Jacqueline Coley, Rotten Tomatoes Editor 

‘So #MaryPoppinsReturns is so much excellence. Emily Blunt will get all the noms, Lin-Manuel win all the hearts, and the music will be in your head and on your playlist for months,’ – Joel Meares, Rotten Tomatoes Editor-in-Chief

‘Emily Blunt will get a nomination for Best Actress, and has a solid shot at winning,’ – Skyler Shuler, Editor-in-Chief at The Dis Insider

‘Emily Blunt is fierce and amazing and I think I’m in love,’ – Nick Kazden, Journalist

‘THE MAGIC IS BACK Emily Blunt is just perfection as Mary Poppins,’ – Zach Pope, Film Critic   

‘Much like the Banks family, I didn’t realize how much I needed Mary Poppins back in my life until she arrived. Emily Blunt is magical,’ – Stephen (Dirk) Libbey, Cinema Blend Associate Editor and Writer

‘I can finally say that I loved #MaryPoppinsReturns! Emily Blunt is practically perfect in every way!’ –  Jenna Busch, Founder/EIC of LegionofLeia.com

‘#MaryPoppinsReturns is practically perfect in every way. I felt as if I was transported to a world where anything is possible,’ – Kyle Arango, Critic

‘The film is a showstopper! Disney pulled every trick out of the bag, and this is Rob Marshall’s best musical since Chicago,’ – EJ Moreno, Film-Maker

‘#MaryPoppinsReturns ⁠is the warm, cozy comfort weight blanket we need right now… Emily Blunt is perfect,’ – Courtney Howard, Film Critic and Writer

‘#MaryPoppinsReturns is wonderful. It anticipates and miraculously evades any cynicism and leaves you in a state of joy,’ – Silas Lesnick, Senior Editor at Moviebill  

Emily said: ‘She is besotted with this movie – to the point where I have deep dread she is simply going to reject my version and be like, “You are not Mary Poppins” because she is so in love with Julie Andrews and she knows every single song.’

Although she added that her version of Mary Poppins, 25 years on from the original, is ‘more eccentric’: ‘She is incredibly rude, vain and batty… she really made me laugh.’ 

Emily added to Entertainment Tonight on landing the role: ‘It was sort of a dual feeling of, like, well, I desperately want to do it, but how do I carve out a new space for myself? How do I create my version of her?”

‘I’d seen it as a child, so I have this sort of searing memory of her, but didn’t want to watch it as an adult before playing her because I kind of knew I might be swayed by what Julie did and feel like I have to emulate or compromise what I was wanting to do with her, which I took from the books. 

Exciting: Mary Poppins Returns is directed by Rob Marshall – best known for bringing Chicago: The Musical to life on the big screen in 2002 with Catherine Zeta Jones and Renee Zellweger

Concerns: Emily is at the helm of the sequel, but shared her reservations at taking on the titular character, as she explained daughter Hazel, four, is ‘obsessed’ with the original Mary Poppins

Original: Emily told Vanity Fair: ‘I have deep dread she is simply going to reject my version because she is so in love with Julie Andrews (above) and she knows every single song’

Ode to the past: Dick Van Dyke (above with Julie Andrews) is the only actor from the original Mary Poppins movie to return and plays the son, Mr Dawes Junior, of one of his original characters

‘They were a huge source, and she’s very different in the books.’

The Girl On The Train actress added to Screen Rant that taking on the role of Mary Poppins has been ‘surreal’. She said: ‘I think Mary Poppins as a character is so iconic, and I think the film, for me, and I think for most people, is one of those films that is sort of seared into people’s memory, an emblem of their nostalgia in many ways. It’s very surreal to me being Mary Poppins.’

In the movie, Ben Whishaw plays the role of Michael Banks and Emily Mortimer appears as his sister Jane, while Julia Walters plays the siblings’ housekeeper.

Lin-Manuel Miranda stars as Jack a lamplighter and former apprentice of Bert from the Mary Poppins original. 

Colin Firth is William ‘Weatherall’ Wilkins, the current president of Fidelity Fiduciary Bank and Meryl Streep stars as Mary Poppins eccentric cousin Topsy. 

Angela Lansbury also features in the movie as The Balloon Lady. 

Making it her own: Emily added that her version of Mary Poppins, 25 years on from the original, is ‘more eccentric’, adding: ‘She is incredibly rude, vain and batty… she really made me laugh’

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