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The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel

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Film Review: Saving Mr Banks (2013)
Saving Mr Banks (2013). Written by Kelly Marcel and Sue Smith and directed by John Lee Hancock. The film starts in London, 1961. Pamela Travers (Emma Thompson), the author of Mary Poppins, is financially bereft and on the verge of losing her house. She is left with no option but to accept Walt Disney's (Tom Hanks) offer to buy the rights to the story, albeit with several conditions. The story then switches between Travers' trip to LA to oversee production, and her childhood initially in England, and then Australia. Saving Mr Banks feels very much like two films, that of Travers' childhood, and that of her conflict with Walt Disney. The former of the two stories is well told, with subtlety, and a particularly good performance from Colin Farrell as Travers' father. The latter of the two stories feels heavy-handed, and laden with stereotypes; that of the uptight English person being broken by the relaxed "normal" Americans. Along with the disparity between the two stories, there's the key issue of how accurate a biopic this is. Of course neither of the two main characters are around to tell us. I would be much more interested in the story if this was based on an autobiography from Travers, which sadly doesn't exist. Certainly how Travers felt about the film after she saw it was not covered completely or accurately here. For those who like biopics, and perhaps aren't as picky as me. 3/5 (Average)