"Nanny McPhee Returns" is a delight for kids and their parents
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Published: 8/23/2010 6:16 PM
Print this article There are films that are for children and there are films that are for adults, yet it's often difficult to find one that is fit for both. Luckily for moviegoers, "Nanny McPhee Returns" is a delightful story that will have kids rolling in the aisles and their parents full of smiles.
Written by Emma Thompson, who also stars as the title character, the sequel to the original story takes place in the English countryside during the Second World War. It's there that we meet Isabel Green (Maggie Gyllenhaal, showing off her spot-on British accent), a woman whose husband is away in battle. In his absence she is in charge of her three children, Vincent (Oscar Steer), Norman (Asa Butterfield) and Megsie (Lil Woods). The family resides on a sprawling farm that is in serious need of a scrub down.
To say the Green's living quarters are messy would be the understatement of the year. There is filth everywhere, and the farm's animals, such as the pigs, run amuck. Of course, this is a delightful excuse to use the word "poo" as much as possible, which the little ones are bound to adore.
To make matters worse for the Green family, they are suddenly paid a visit by their stuffy British cousins, Cyril (Eros Vlahos) and Celia Gray (Rosie Taylor-Ritson). These little tykes are millionaires-in-training, and as they drink their tea with their pinkies in the air and complain about their new household, some hi-jinx appropriately ensue.
Moviegoers may be wondering where McPhee fits into all of this, and just like the original "Nanny McPhee" movie, she descends upon the needy family just in the nick of time. Of course, she sports gross warts on her face, an ugly mess of hair and a very large nose, but the children eventually fall in love with her despite her odd appearance.
Those who remember Emma Thompson best from her performance as Elinor Dashwood in "Sense and Sensibility," or even as the beautiful Beatrice in "Much Ado About Nothing," may find it a bit jarring to see the beautiful woman cloaked in such ugly makeup. However, her talents shine through, and that's something both young and older moviegoers can enjoy together.
"Nanny McPhee Returns" is rated PG and has 109-minute running time. It contains some crude humor, and some adult themes, such as war and death. Recommended for children ages 5 and up.
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