Nanny McPhee

Second choice of recent in-flight entertainment was this British update on Mary Poppins.

If you attach a prosthetic nose and some warty bits to Emma Thompson you have the very ugly and lumpy Nanny McPhee. Not quite your lovely smiling Julie Andrews copycat. But just like Mary Poppins, Nanny McPhee is magical. She uses her magic to teach the runaway children of the recently widowed Mr Brown lessons in consequences.

Into this mix you can add an austere and domineering ex-Mother-in-law who supports the family financially, played by the wonderful Angela Lansbury; the young, uneducated parlourmaid who loves the children and their father; and finally Mr Brown himself played by Colin Firth.

Imelda Staunton has a nice piece as the family cook and Celia Imrie as a prospective bride for the hapless Mr Brown, whose continued financial support from his mother-in-law revolves around providing a new mother for his children.

As this is a movie for children, the outcome is not really ever in doubt, but that doesn’t take too much of the charm away from it. It was an easy movie to watch, and even though Colin Firth lapses completely into Mr Darcy mode at a couple of points, he and all the others give good, solid performances. Even the children manage to be endearing.

I’d rate this a 2.5 out of 5.

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