Five years ago I did a review of the 45th Anniversary Edition of Mary Poppins. Now the 50th Anniversary Edition is out... so how does it compare? What's different? Well, this is the first time it's on blu-ray, so that's a major step. It does look very nice, even though like a lot of old films there is a fair amount of grain in dark scenes. Ghostbusters has that problem as well, so it's not just really old films. It'd be really great if someday soon some audio/video restoration geniuses could find a way to fix that.
The audio here was giving a 7.1 channel update. I'm pretty sure the 45th Anniversary Edition had 5.1 sound. We don't have 7.1 speakers so I can't really comment on that, but the 5.1 sounds great.
There are some extra features in this release as well, but only a couple new ones, and it seems like fewer than the 45th Anniversary Edition. The first new extra is called Becoming Mr. Sherman, which is where the songwriter for Mary Poppins, Richard Sherman, talks with Jason Schwartzman, who plays Mr. Sherman in the new film Saving Mr. Banks.
Jason's Guardian Angel
The second new extra is called the Mary-Oke Sing-Along, which are animated videos where you can sing along to the songs while the lyrics display. It's well done but nothing really special.
Mary-oke Bonus Feature: Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious
The other extras are the deleted song Chimpanzoo, a featurette about the making of Mary Poppins called Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, and A Magical Musical Reunion with Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, and Richard Sherman. I think all three of these were on the 45th Anniversary Edition as I know I've seen them before. And then there's also a feature length commentary, which is actually a mix of commentaries from various people. Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke are two of those people, and are the more interesting ones to listen to.
- Becoming Mr. Sherman
- Mary-Oke Sing-Along
- Deleted Song – “Chimpanzoo”
- A Magical Musical Reunion with Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, and Richard Sherman
- Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious: The Making Of Mary Poppins
- Audio Commentary
I felt it could have used some more extras, but still I think this is a good 50th anniversary release. If you already have the previous release then you probably won't need this one unless you're going for the blu-ray. For my review of the actual movie, please see my review of the 45th Anniversary Edition of Mary Poppins.