Now that I’ve already said most of what I’ve got to say on instagram [[[www.instagram.com/jahwoo333 😉 ]]] …and I’ve put off writing my ‘review’ until the day I’d said it would be posted by…I’m not in the writing mood and don’t really want to….go figure…but anywho let’s attempt it shall we?
Prefaceish…I “won” a pass to see a prescreening of this movie. As I actually wanted to see it I actually went ((Have won or received a few times in the past screening invites but…weren’t movies I cared to see..maybe if I would have also had a free ride..but i digress to progress)). I was excited of the thought that ‘WOW…almost like an actual critic..I could post a review BEFORE the movie is out’…and then a little research and…they seem to have done about half a million screenings..they REALLLLY want the word out…and luckily for them the movie doesn’t suck..but I’ve never seen so much of a screening blitz for any movie before…not that I may have been paying attention….before I get to the ‘review’..i have to say..there were seats “reserved” for critics…we got there a little late and were nearly going to be stuck in row 2…but then some of those reserved seats magically opened up…and well…I was then sitting in one of those previously reserved for a critic seats…so….clearly it’s my DUTY to post a review then right?…ha.
Saving Mr. Banks : If you know nothing about this movie the thing that will be the buzz is…Tom Hanks is playing Walt Disney in…a Walt Disney Picture; Thus smart money would be placed on a white washing of Walt…but then this movie isn’t really about Walt. Thankfully he shows up enough to play his part, as it were, in the story but not to much that the story is overshadowed by Walt;; but then…for the average consumer….EVERYTHING Disney is overshadowed by Walt…or..maybe not…In any case this is NOT “the Walt Disney Story”…so anyone planning on seeing it looking for that..you would be rather disappointed…HOWEVER that being said…there’s a scene, which I think is his best, in a later portion of the movie that is a taste of what could be if there were to be a full on Walt bio pic. Before I move on from Walt I have to say for the first ten or fifteen minutes I didn’t see Tom Hanks on screen playing Walt; I saw Tom Hanks On screen being..Tom Hanks pretending to be someone else. ON a likely plus I didn’t see him as Forrest Gump or some other character…but still…Tom Hanks and Walt Disney clearly not the same guy so I was afraid I’d be distracted by that the whole ‘pictures’. Anywho; moving on from that ((if you didn’t get it..after fifteen minutes I was buying the Walt that Tom was portraying)). As for what the movie IS about. This is the story about Walt Disney flying in the creator/author/person behind Mary Poppins and trying to sell her on his vision of Mary Poppins for the big screen so she will sign off on the rights. That in itself doesn’t sound like a very entertaining premise does it? I didn’t think so and I wanted to see it…so…to a complete outsider…probably not something they think they want to see…and well they could be correct. Obviously if you’re familiar with Disney, Mary Poppins, and things that tie in to them you’re going to want to see this…if you hate Disney and Mary Poppins…there’s a great acting performance or three…I don’t believe anyone would hate the movie….[[[[there’s perhaps a small segment of society that would find it boring….that small segment are small brained juice heads that go into a rage if they don’t see explosions, scantly clad women, and violence on the screen……that’s a bit of a stereotype perhaps and of course but I HAVE interacted with a few of those people..most infamously the guy that wanted to kick my ass over City of God..but I must digress back to the flick at hand.]]]]
Tom Hanks is acceptable as Disney. Emma Thompson steals the show…I predict an Oscar nomination and likely win coming for her but…I don’t generally predict such things…however in this case because she was so convincing at being a person that in actuality she could have been nothing like…she sells it so well that to find out the character in question was any different would be a disappointment. ((based on one point of reference that you won’t see if you leave once the credits begin to roll…she was pretty damn spot on;;; on that note….my first screening..and the first movie in maybe forever that I’ve gone to and 95% of the audience was there for most of the credits..even at the very end probably 40% remained….usually I’m sitting alone…maybe 2…3….8-10 other people..at most 15 are still in the theater as the credits are done. I don’t know if the movie was that good or powerful or it’s because it was a screening or….why but I enjoy when I’m not sitting alone as the guy or gal with the garbage can comes in to sweep up garbage…and that’s as it should be. Sign of respect for those who worked on the movie if nothing else.)). Jason Schwartzman & B.J. Novak are good as the song writing Sherman brothers; B.J. perhaps even better than Jason however I feel like we might see a supporting actor nod for Jason. Bradley Whitford, I think, plays the other guy in the room and is also quite good. Those three deserve perhaps some kind of three person supporting actor role nod…..and last but not least on the performance side her driver as portrayed by Paul Giamatti was also quite good but I don’t know if he’s in enough of the movie to be nominated but he deserves recognition. [[[[[[strike that there’s also a young girl in the movie at some point that is either a great actress or just good at….playing a young girl…lol; her name is Annie Rose Buckley and she could have a bright future in Hollyweird ahead of her.]]]]]][[[couple of other faces you will recognize that are good..really there’s no bad performances here as far as I saw so if you’re into performances over ability..you shouldn’t be disappointed]]]
The story is solid. The acting is convincing((per the [[]] above..lol)). The soundtrack is…what it needs to be. There’s a Disney fan “mark out” moment or two that were nice touches. I don’t know what else or if there’s much else that I need to say that I haven’t. I do have a few more thoughts I’m going to share post review that could be seen as moderate spoilers….but for a movie based on a true story….what can really be spoiled; right? ((but JUST in case someone is actually reading this..and want’s to go in with as little knowledge about what actually happens, and I’m sure I’ve really given you NOTHING about how things unfold above..let me know if you disagree)). One more thing; clearly as Walt is part of the story and the woman behind Mary Poppins is behind the story….this is an intertwining sort of flick…I said a bit more on Instagram then I will here but perhaps some of the intertwinement can get a bit distracting…it works well to do what it’s there to do but I can see how some people might say….why do we keep going to that? More on what I’m hinting at in the spoilerish section. So all that being said, and more being said than I needed to say, if you think you want to see the movie..you should go…if you think you don’t…you could still like it…it’s a solid movie and well worth seeing and OF COURSE if you’re a Disney fanboy or fangirl (or if you happen to just love Mary Poppins and are a Mary Poppins fanboy/fangirl; does such a thing exist?) you’re going to love it. For those reasons and more or less. Saving Mr. Banks 4.5-4.75 shining Disney *’s out of 5.
;;;;averages out to 4.625 in case you prefer that…I must add that until about the last third of the movie..and until a scene that may or may not be pivotal ((said scene being the moment that Tom Hanks sold being Walt the best…))…I was feeling 4*’s….that last bit bumped it up…so maybe Tom Hanks did/does a better job at playing Walt than I give credit for earlier in my review…however…I’m sure that’s going to be the biggest point of contention as well..so we shall see once it’s in wide release and all the feedback is out there.;;;;(((4.416 if you average my three scores…so point really being..worst case scenario, IMO at least, at worst it’s a 4…or 4.4….lol)))
Spoileryish/deeper thought on the film and some other things time ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Okay so as touched upon there’s interweaving stories…one of the interweaving stories takes place in a different period of time…really it’s just that and the time the main story unfolds…there’s not a whole sub story focusing on Disney, the song writers, and the creator of Mary Poppins however they do at least briefly visit all three in the time period setting of the movie. (ooh and her driver too)…that story is her story when she was a child…it’s probably 30 or 45 minutes of the flick and maybe one segment could have been left out…or they could have trimmed some of that fat….without it would be a slightly different movie..with it…that’s the thing that might annoy, confuse, irritate, or other ma and pa film goer; most people will probably connect the dots relatively quickly but it surely will confuse at least some. On that however that is the girl playing the young girl I alluded too; her performance seems to be quite good..but it’s hard to judge kids playing kids sometimes…okay that out of the way. A bit more spoiley but even though I had forgotten I knew…I actually had already known….Being a movie featuring Walt Disney as a lead character you CLEARLY expect to see Disneyland at some point…I was wondering if it was going to happen…and when it finally did….that’s a Disney geek “mark out” (((btw mark out is pro wrestling related…when you totally buy into something and ooze joy over it…that is marking out..lol)))) moment…to see a modern take on 60’s Disneyland is nothing less than magical….to see Disneyland IN A MOVIE….is a very rare occurrence to boot..so those two things combine for awesomeness….even if it’s not a large portion of the movie….I focused more on the extras as really that was the biggest selling point of “this is 60s Disneyland”…and finally my thought that could be entirely incorrect but this was MY interpretation…..our interweaving stories give us insight into why she is so against giving Walt the rights…..at some point it goes quite dark….this movie on the surface is all popcorn, bubblegum, and Mickey Mouse balloons but deeper within…there’s a psychological unraveling….you could almost call it a mystery….with brief glimpses of outright horror. Almost Hitchcockian?. Yep. I could go as far as to say….Saving Mr. Banks. Dramatic comedy? spshaw! It’s purely a psychological thriller….and most people would say ..’ mr. you’re nuts’….but if you happen to see the movie..and you happen to read this….and you happen to agree…or disagree….leave a comment and let me know…uhmkay thanks. Saving Mr. Banks. Psychological thriller of the year 😉 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
but if you’ve seen it and you read my review..leave feedback…even if you haven’t but you read my review and it makes you feel like you should..or shouldn’t…leave a comment..please and thanks. Likes are fine to let me know someone is reading but feedback is better than a like…uhmkay.