A very eccentric nanny once said that a “spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down.” If, say, the medicine was simply a metaphor for the banality of everyday life, then Disney just dropped a spoonful of sugar to sweeten your day and (probably) put a smile on your face with the release of not one but two new original songs from Mary Poppins Returns.
First, spice things up with “Trip a Little Light Fantastic,” a rousing number for the film’s lamplighters led by Tony-winning Lin-Manuel Miranda. Think “Step in Time,” but instead of Dick Van Dyke’s endearing cockney accent, now we have Miranda’s. Honestly, I already have goosebumps just envisioning the dance number in this standout scene.
Then take a listen to Emily Blunt’s gorgeous “The Place Where Lost Things Go” — a sentimental ballad that sounds like a new Disney classic.
Written by Marc Shaiman with lyrics by Scott Wittman, these tracks capture the same balance of whimsy and emotion of the original film.
Set in the 1930s in Depression-era London — two decades after the first film and coincidentally the same time period of author P.L. Travers’s original book series — Rob Marshall’s Mary Poppins Returns finds grown-up Michael (Ben Whishaw) and his three children living back on Cherry Tree Lane. After Michael suffers a personal loss, Mary Poppins (Blunt) re-enters the lives of the Banks family, and, along with her optimistic friend Jack (Miranda), “uses her unique magical skills to help the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives.”
The film will also introduce a slew of whimsical new characters, including Mary’s kooky cousin, Topsy (Meryl Streep), who will no doubt deliver a show-stopping performance of her own.
Mary Poppins Returns sweeps theaters December 19.