Mary Poppins Returns
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All Critics (7)
| Top Critics (6)
| Fresh (1)
| Rotten (6)
It's unspeakably depressing to see Anna Paquin playing the mom (of a teenager!), but the pointlessness and mediocrity of the Paquin-produced "Free Ride" is even more depressing.
The result, while sincere and nicely evoked, feels choppy, familiar and, despite the script's heavily stacked deck - and a few harrowing episodes - lacks sufficient momentum.
From top to bottom, it feels authentic, and its laid-back, nonjudgmental tone evokes the easygoing world of Jimmy Buffett songs celebrating how changes in latitude bring changes in attitude.
While this true-life odyssey should be the basis for a compelling drama or even a taut thriller, slack direction and a weak screenplay undermine the plot's inherent tension.
In between bizarrely low-octane moments of authorities circling the ring, the soulful up-and-comer crafts a far more perilous tale, one of a teenage caretaker getting a crash course in growing up too fast, too soon.
The film is content to merely document certain happenings and hope you find them as interesting as it does.
Shana Betz's too-insistent refusal to commit to the melodramatic or to the suspenseful only makes the film seem like empty dramatization.
Really can't fault the 70's look and feel this movie had - really convincing to the era!
The movie felt a little thin and patchy, but I liked the reveal at the end.
I don't know that I quite liked the mothers will do what they have to do rationalising at the end - sorry, I would rather be a poor cleaner than try and take the "easy" road personally, but it's a true story, and that's someone's own feelings, so I'm not going to comment too much on that.
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