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Blu-ray Review

DVD cover

Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang (2010)
(2019 Reissue)


Starring: Emma Thompson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ralph Fiennes, Rhys Ifans, Maggie Smith and Ewan McGregor
Distributor: Fabulous Films Ltd / Fremantle Media Enterprises
RRP: £14.99


Certificate: U
Release Date: 01 April 2019

Nanny McPhee appears at the door of a harried young mother, Mrs. Isabel Green, who is trying to run the family farm while her husband is away at war. But once she’s arrived, Nanny McPhee discovers that Mrs. Green’s children are fighting a war of their own against two spoiled city cousins who have just moved in after their parents sent them away from London because of the threat of The Blitz...

Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang is the second Nanny McPhee movie. It's set many years after the first movie, and is once again a feel good movie which finely balances its beats - so we have sad, poignant moments as well as action and comedy.

The acting is universally impressive - especially the five children - and there's some surprise cameo appearances too including Bill Bailey, Ralph Fiennes, and a very brief appearance by Ewan McGregor.

Emma Thompson is wonderful in the role of Nanny McPhee, Maggie Smith shows perfect comedy timing as Mrs. Docherty and Rhys Ifans proves he can master physical comedy. The only character I had a hard time believing was Maggie Gyllenhaal as Mrs Green. While on the whole her acting is good (especially considering she's managed to perfect a near faultless English accent) there were a few too many scenes where the acting was just a little too hammy.

Also... I must be extremely stupid, but I have no idea what the title's "Big Bang" actually alludes to. Yes, I understand the "Big Bang" story, but it's an element that's tagged onto the last act of the movie. There's no actual big bang and the entire title makes little sense.

What I did think was interesting in this movie was that Nanny McPhee's gradual change in appearance was more subtle. You don't really see her entire transformation until the last scene. There's also a little nod and a wink to fans who have seen the first film with a clever, and rather touching link.

This movie also ups the supernatural element a notch, with Nanny McPhee's bike not only travelling faster than the speed of sound, but also gaining the ability to fly. Personally I thought these elements took it outside itself a little making it a tad too distracting.

Extras include an audio commentary with director Susanna White (which is patchy, but offers a few interesting insights into the making of the movie). It also includes the features that were included in the 2010 DVD release, but they're grouped together under one long feature: Deleted Scenes (14 min, 19 sec); New Film New Story (4 min, 9 sec featurette that looks the background to the movie); Magical Moves (1 min, 53 sec featurette that examines the staging of the scene where the children have to attack themselves); Mr Edelweiss (2 min, 05 sec look at the training of the jackdaws); Emma Thompson Becomes Nanny McPhee (1 min, 40 sec look at Emma Thompson's make-up application); The Pigs (3 min, 42 sec look at filming the pig sequences); and The Mud (2 min, 04 sec explanation of how the mud was made for the movie and the problems it caused).

As a family movie that everyone can enjoy it doesn't get much more impressive than this. It's clever, witty and a whole lot of fun.


Darren Rea

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