Nanny McPhee Returns (2010) Poster

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Lots of fun
ecstatic-tickle22 March 2010
Emma Thompson once again pens and stars in the candy-coloured film adaptation of the children's' books by Christianna Brand, following a very strict and very ugly nanny who brings order and manners to a household full of naughty children. This outing sees the titular character nursing a farmhouse family whose father is off at war. The mother, played by Maggie Gyllenhaal is obliged the sell the land to her nasty brother (Rhys Ifans), a slimy character who will not rest till he gets his way. Meanwhile the children's' vile London cousins come to stay - two little brats who bawk at the state of the earthy farm abode.

Enter Nanny McPhee - an otherworldly being who appears when a family needs her most - squashed-nosed and snaggle-toothed, she calmly teaches the children five important lessons, though when things get out of hand she must employ the same supernatural technique of setting down her walking stick as she did in her previous adventure, and to spectacular effect. Nanny McPhee attempts to set the household to rights using these very methods, while the family struggle on with their visitors and hope against hope that their father will return.

Thanks to Emma Thompson's involvement, the film boasts a impressive array of British thespians including Maggie Smith, Ewan McGregor and Ralph Fiennes as a senior WW2 army officer. Though characterisation is hardly profound in a story such as this, each actor has their moment to shine - and Gyllenhaal, as the young mother, sports a flawless British accent and conveys her trademark maternal emotion when needs be. Production values are stellar, with all the period details on display. The film whisks along at a nice pace and never gets bogged down in one place - Thompson's adaptation is wrought with real warmth and wit, and once again she works wonders on-screen under layers of prosthetics, with every wry glance and raise of the eyebrow worthy of a laugh.

Setting the story of against the backdrop of World War II is very smart move - the 'big bang' in the title referring to the imminent threat of bombings during this time period. This gives the film a foundation of realism that the previous movie lacked....however, there's little room left for war time misery in the thematic threads of this story - you're more like to find a group of piglets doing synchronised swimming than any sign of a swastika.

Ultimately this is a family film, written for children - talking to them, not at them and carrying a very sensitive message at its heart. There are no double-entendres for the adults the snigger at, this is harmless entertainment at its best. It may not be a new classic but it's nice to see something like this making its way to our screens during the Easter break.
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Great film
mark-norman-019 April 2010
I don't know what the critics here were expecting, but from some of the reviews I've read it seems that it wasn't a kids' film. In short, this is a lovely, well-written, beautifully cast film that's executed with great affection and makes maximum use of its chocolate-box locations.

Emma Thompson, aside from having no little talent for scriptwriting, is savvy enough to understand that the real stars of this film are the children and, in particular, Asa Butterfield and Eros Vlahos as Norman and Cyril respectively.

Rhys Ifans shows what an accomplished comic actor he is, even if his performance as Uncle Phil seems to draw much, both in characterisation and delivery, from that of Matt Dillon's portrayal of Healy in There's Something About Mary.

There's a lovely turn from Maggie Smith as Mrs Docherty and a reassuringly exuberant performance from Sam Kelly.

If there's a lull, it's when the action moves away from its countryside setting, although the scene played between Vlahos and Ralph Feinnes works nicely.

At a little under an hour and fifty minutes, it's quite long for children, yet my five- and eight-year-olds sat transfixed throughout. And in the end, that should be the yardstick by which any film aimed at younger cinema-goers should be measured.

As to Thompson herself, she is sublime when required, understated when the surrounding action demands. The reviewer who likened her performance to that of Roger Moore does not, I would suggest, appreciate either the characterisation of the Nanny McPhee role (much can be, and is, portrayed by simple facial expressions) or the very real acting ability of our erstwhile Bond. Comedy isn't all about snappy one-liners and the ability to convey comedy simply by saying nothing is an art in and of itself.

In the final analysis, this is a better film than its predecessor. It is more lovingly-crafted, less fantastic in the literal sense and more sharply observed. Watch it for what it is - a modern take on the old Mary Poppins story - and you won't be disappointed.
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Your Kids Are Going to Love Their New Nanny...
LadyLiberty13 September 2010
If you've seen the first Nanny McPhee movie, then you know the premise of the second: A harried single parent (this time a woman played by Maggie Gyllenhaal) is overwhelmed by her three children plus two cousins from London who come to stay at her small farm. World War II is raging, her husband is somewhere in the battle theater, and her brother-in-law (Rhys Ifans) wants nothing more than to sell the family farm out from under her.

Just as poor Isabel Green wonders how she'll manage to make a payment on the tractor, get the crops in, keep her senile boss (Maggie Smith) from destroying the store, fend off Phil Green's efforts to get her to sign away her rights to the farm, and still take care of five children, Nanny McPhee (Emma Thompson) arrives on the scene.

Nanny McPhee, of course, takes the children promptly in hand and wastes no time teaching them the lessons they need to learn. If Isabel and Phil learn something along the way, so much the better.

The script is fairly silly (penned by Emma Thompson, it's aimed at a very young audience), though it does have its occasional moments of cleverness and poignancy (and one especially silly moment that I must confess was hysterical no matter your age). There's also a heart-rending tie-in to the first film.

The acting is quite good though melodramatic (which, in fairness, is entirely appropriate here). As an aside, Maggie Gyllenhaal's English accent is pretty convincing! The children are just fine, but I must single out Eros Vlahos (who plays cousin Cyril) and Lil Woods (in the role of Megsie Green). Maggie Smith is, of course, her usual stellar self, and Emma Thompson manages to play a caricature of a character without overdoing it at all. A small part for Ralph Fiennes and a cameo from Ewan MacGregor cap off a very capable cast.

BOTTOM LINE: Nanny McPhee Returns was cute, but it wasn't all that good from my own perspective. I'll tell you, though, that every last four, five, and six year-old in the theatre giggled, gasped, laughed, and cooed right when they were supposed to. While I can't recommend this movie for your own grown-up (or even teen-agers') night out, your younger kids will just love it.

POLITICAL NOTES: Although Nanny McPhee Returns takes place during World War II and mentions of the war feature prominently, no details of the reasons for the fight or any political judgments whatsoever are made. Given the nature of that particular conflict, I'd say that there was some real skill exercised in writing about it!

FAMILY SUITABILITY: Nanny McPhee Returns is rated PG for "rude humor, some language and mild thematic elements." Frankly, children young enough to enjoy this movie take especial delight in rude humor like that exhibited here, and the mild thematic elements will likely be largely above their heads. Any real concerns should be easily addressed by Mom or Dad after the movie's over.
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Nanny McPhee Is Back To The Rescue
Chrysanthepop7 April 2011
Emma Thompson takes us back to the colourful world of Nanny McPhee. This time Nanny McPhee has a mission with a new family. I loved the first movie. Not only was it a refreshing tribute to classics like Mary Poppins, but it had heart and magic and its world looked surreal, a splendid movie for the entire family.

Here too the world is just as colourful and surreal and looks like a fun place. Yes, even Isabel's muddy farm looks like an enjoyable place to live at. The creativity in writing and art direction amuses me, for example, watching those piglets lying in the scratch machine was cute and hilarious. The new animal characters, especially the baby elephant, are a delight. The lighting and slightly yellowish tint gives 'Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang' a very sunny look. The humour works very well as it had me laughing out loud on various occasions.

However, unlike in the first movie, the story here felt rushed and there were some inconsistencies. The bomb sequence, as entertaining as it was, wasn't necessary and it only distracted from the main story. The child actors here are competent but their counterparts in the first film performed better. While the special effects here are very good they didn't appear as authentic.

Emma Thompson reprises the title role and she does a fine job. She mostly takes the backseat while letting the other actors perform. Maggie Gyllenhaal shows a knack for comedy and her English accent sounds authentic. Maggie Smith is a riot. Rhys Ifans does well as the greedy uncle.

'Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang' may not measure up to 'Nanny McPhee' but it's still a lot of fun and a good watch for the family. I was smiling after it finished (watch it through the closing credits as there's a very cute surprise).
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Pink Floyd
ernstvannoort1 September 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Nanny McPhee is a lovable movie for children. Most parents I know have enjoyed the movie as much as the children. Usually the sequels aren't as good but this is an exception. A remarkable scene is when Nanny McPhee and the 2 boys go to the head war office in Londen. When they arrive in Londen, you can see an old factory with four chimney's in the background. As common in war time city's you could see anti aircraft balloons in the sky and one was shaped like a pig. This scene resembles a famous cover of a Pink Floyd album called 'Animals'. One of the tracks on this album is 'Pigs on the wing'.

The producer must be a big Pink Floyd fan.
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Nanny McPhee Returns was a nice surprise for someone like me who hadn't seen the previous film in the series
tavm15 September 2010
Having not seen the previous Nanny McPhee movie, what I got was a pleasant surprise watching this funny and touching sequel starring and written by Emma Thompson. As the title character, I wasn't completely sure of what to think of her but she, like everyone else in the cast, eventually grew on me as the movie went on. And she's accompanied in the film by many compelling actors like Rhys Ifans, Maggie Smith, Ralph Fiennes, and Maggie Gyllenhaal who sounds fine sporting an English accent. There's also an appearance by Ewan McGregor in a role I don't want to reveal. Also fine were the children playing Ms. Gyllenhaal's offspring and the cousins who convincingly transition from spoiled rotten to more socially appealing during the picture. And the special effects involving the animals also rate highly with me. So on that note, Nanny McPhee Returns comes much recommended from me.
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One for all the family
sabertammama22 March 2010
Not having seen Nanny McPhee 1, I wasn't sure what to expect, but I have to say I was very pleasantly surprised.

The film was very easy to get into and the story and plot were well written and set.

The actors young and old performed brilliantly making the whole thing enchanting and a highly believable fantasy.

The special effects were very well done and the comedy in it was delightful. I took my children with me, aged 5, 12, 15 and 18 and they all loved it too, with lots of laugh out loud moments and lots of smiles throughout.

All in all a very good film and I recommend it highly.

If you're going to see it I suggest you take all the family. Its a definite must see for all ages and you'll not be disappointed.
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Possibly the happiest kids film since The Muppets: Christmas Carol?
HollyJLancaster31 March 2010
Warning: Spoilers
I imagined that it would be hard for Emma Thompson to retain the standards set by the first Nanny McPhee film when I heard that she was making a sequel. Baring in mind that I was hardly the imagined demographic for the first outing (I'm 24 years old and not by nature a sentimental person) I could not believe that a sequel could ever recapture the magic and sheer exuberance of the first. But it did and then some! After the first ten minutes of the film, I was so engaged in Emma's story telling and the characters that any fear vanished. Featuring some truly funny moments delivered by some very good young actors and once again brilliantly performed by Emma Thompson, the second Nanny McPhee film is for me, as much in league with modern children's classics as the much hyped Harry Potter. I found the storyline joyful and uplifting without being saccharine sweet and the film boasts some wonderful cameos. Katy Brand steals the show as the rough voiced yet somehow glamorous hit woman hot on the heels of Rhys Ifan's delightfully over the top villain. If I had to make any fault at all with this film it is at Maggie Gyllenhaal's unexpected casting and sometimes overly enthusiastic gushing, although generally Gyllenhaal is a decent actress she remains quite unlikeable for the first half of this film as the over-worked yet underwhelming mother character. A stunning turn from Dame Maggie Smith as she proves she still has the power to take even the smallest of roles and turn it into a wonderfully amusing, well performed piece.
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A Delightful Movie
ccohron12 September 2010
Emma Thompson did a great job as Nanny McPhee again. The make-up is excellent! Miss Thompson is an attractive lady and the make-up department totally changed her for this role..good job there. All the actors did a great job in this film. The young actors worked together and made the movie seem real. The photography was great and the scene with all the poop made me want to check my shoes. Funny...attention grabbing story about real people in tough times. I liked this movie! I hope there is a Mcphee 3, 4, 5 etc. We need more films with this quality and a message that means something. I guess the pigs were computer generated but they looked great...very realistic.
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Disappointing, lacked "child centered magic" of first film
FourInTheFamily17 September 2010
First, I need to say we saw the first Nanny McFee film and loved it. We were hoping for the same charm in this film. Unfortunately, we found it lacking. We were quite ready to suspend reality and enjoy a magical nanny, but we didn't find the movie to have the humor and general upbeat styling we were expecting.

This film seemed to be in a great hurry to finish all the lessons Nanny wanted to teach without us ever knowing what they were. The lessons were taught after one incident of naughty behavior. No one, not even movie kids, learn a life lesson in one episode! Part of the charm in the first movie was that you were left to wonder if the lessons were learned due to the children learning and living them or from the magic of Nanny McFee. In the second movie, there is no question that magic has changed behavior, not a realization of why this new behavior is proper.

Less than half way through the movie, my 10 year old daughter leaned in to me and said, "This one isn't funny like the first one, is it?" She was quite right, as a whole, this wasn't a funny movie. There was too much mean-ness and too many dire situations for it to be considered funny.

This cast deserved better and Emma Thompson did not deliver a viable story. Though I must say, we LOVED Maggie Smith's character and her surprise revelation at the end.

This movie on it's own ranks a 4 or 5, but this movie as a sequel ranks only a 3.
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Worst mother ever.
Dangergrover3 September 2011
Warning: Spoilers
This is an OKAY kids movie about working together and sharing and blah blah blah but what kills me about this movie is Maggie Gyllenhaal is perfectly willing to kill her children, her sisters children, Nanny McPhee, AND two neighbors for some barley. At the end a bomb (I would assume is conjured by the weird looking chick that I wouldn't let around my pets much less my children) lands in the barely field and the mom let's the CHILDREN try to disarm it and if it wasn't for the crow that happens to enjoy eating explosive putty (because such a thing as hardened putty that explodes was used then, I guess) they would have all been blown all over the farm. Oh and this is besides the fact of the two "hit women" that are about to eviscerate Rhys Ifans in the kitchen and leave his entails all over the place for the children to see and then stuff him like a scene from Texas Chainsaw Massacre. All in all a perfect children's movie!
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Totally Adorable
noriborijoyner19 February 2011
Warning: Spoilers
What an incredible movie. Just fantastic. All of the cast was absolutely phenomenal, especially the kids, they were amazing! You know you're a talented actress when you don't have the leading role but you still make the whole movie, and that's what Maggie Smith did. She was hysterical all the way through, some highlights being when she is frantically waking up her husband because she wants him to see the bomb go off, when she tries to sit on the cow patty thinking it's a cushion, and when Isabel goes into her store to find that by "putting the flour away", she really means dumping it all over the floor, but the best part of all was right at the end. Nanny McPhee says goodbye to Aggie, and Aggie pulls a little silver rattle out of her dress pocket, it clicked to me and to other fans of the first movie that Maggie Smith is playing a full grown version of Baby Agatha from the first movie. I suggest seeing the first movie before the second one, because it's okay standalone but there's at least one reference to the previous movie. The part when the father gets home is ever so slightly corny for all us cynics out there, but it didn't put a damper on my enjoyment of the film, and I really really liked this. I recommend it to anyone, particularly people with kids of any age. Great film.
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So-so, love the actors but hate the script & direction
jburtroald956 April 2010
The immensely talented Emma Thompson returns to play and write the story of the ultimately wonderful yet outwardly repulsive nanny of the film's title, who assists another desperate single parent by taming their mischievous bunch of spirited youngsters.

The lovely Mrs Green (a perfectly charming Maggie Gyllenhaal) becomes burdened with looking after the family estate, a farm in the English countryside, and her sister's children (Eros Vlahos and Rosie Taylor-Ritson) as well as her own (Asa Butterfield, Oscar Steer and Lil Woods) when her husband (a wordless yet productive Ewan McGregor) goes to war.

The children take advantage of her current frenzied state by squabbling, playing dangerously, making a mess of the house and just generally misbehaving. There is also her scheming brother-in-law Phil (Rhys Ifans at his erratic, despicable, scraggly best) seizing opportunities to prise the ownership of the farm out of her hands, and into those of two ghastly female brutes (a spine-tingling pair of Katy Brand and Sinead Matthews actually evoke sympathy for the villainous Phil) who are relentlessly terrorising him.

To add to her stress, her elderly employer Mrs Docherty (a delightfully senile Maggie Smith) cannot be left alone in her own shop, for fear of disaster.

These are all perfect conditions for the snag-toothed hag with that distinctive silhouette to walk into, and she does just as things are at their most chaotic.

There is no doubt that the cast are superb, and the undisputed highlight of the whole picture. Thompson's reprisal of the role is a joy to behold, with all of the wisdom and subtlety that we saw before, but this time showing more of a range as she experiments with comic moments and more human emotions. Here we also begin to see more of the extent of her mysteriousness. The children also have wonderful chemistry, and emit infinite sparkling charm and innocence with every frame.

Though if only Thompson's acting was again as sharp as her writing, or if only director Kirk Jones had also returned to the project to guide her. The new setting is quite unsuitable, and derails the film in many ways. Gone is the cosy small English village of the original. Gone also is the simplicity, the warmth, the storytelling magic that seeps through from Christianna Brand's original storybooks. These are all sorely missed, as well as those wonderful original characters – Mr Brown, Aunt Adelaide, Evangeline, Mrs Blatherwig, Simon... – and the outstanding actors who played them with such liveliness – Colin Firth, Angela Lansbury, Kell Macdonald, Imelda Staunton, Thomas Sangster... – who inarguably surpass the new faces, however delightful they may be. It might have been thought that bringing them all back would have been tacky, but that would merely have been more faithful to the books, in which Nurse Matilda makes recurring visits to the Brown household after the children have gone back to their old ways. There is however a single scene containing this precious nuance and poignancy, with Ralph Fiennes excelling as a distant father hardened by the war.

Another of the original 2005 film's many virtues was its wealth of sub-plots and dimensions. Clearly this multi-layered quality has been attempted to replicate, but here the layers that have been added on top of the children's lessons are incredibly hackneyed and childish. It is of course a children's film, but Nanny McPhee had an appeal to adults as well as children, while Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang is more juvenile than it needs to be. Phil's efforts to obtain the farm for his tormentors is a typical side-narrative seen countless times earlier, as is that of the long-last father gone to war. Indeed the incorporation of World War II shows enormous misjudgement, with the heavily restricting boundaries of a film for small children preventing the huge event from being done justice.

The nauseatingly corny and clichéd excuse for a climax is the icing on the cake of Susanna White's horribly naive direction, which unfortunately – together with Thompson's rather sloppy script – represses her and the rest of the remarkably adept cast, tragically capping their potential.

Still, it makes for some amiably enjoyable kids fodder, and thankfully it did not keep Thompson from finishing her role in the Harry Potter series.
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Return on an investment of time and money? In spades, for this fine family film
inkblot112 September 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Isabel (Maggie Gyllenhaal) is one harried Brit mother during World War II. Her husband (Ewan McGregor) is away, as a soldier for the British army, and her flat-footed brother-in-law, Phil (Ryhs Ifans) is constantly pestering her to sell the farm, of which he is half-owner. Unknown to Isabel is that Phil has large gambling debts that have to be settled or things will get very ugly. Then, she has three adorable children, Vincent, Megsie, and Norman, who do chores for the farm but are out of control, without their father there to help keep them in line. Next, her nephew and niece have arrived from London, for their safety amid the bombings. These two, Cyril and Cecelia, are stuck-up and spoiled and create problems the minute they set foot at the place. Finally, the family needs to rent a tractor to bring in the barley harvest and Isabel is selling some prized piglets AND working part time in dotty Mrs. Dockerty's (Maggie Smith) general store, to help pay the cost. In the midst of all of this turmoil, a heroine comes calling. She is Nanny McPhee (Emma Thompson), that's little "c", big "P", thank you. This gal, warts and all, has a magic cane she thumps on the ground, to keep children behaving nicely, if persuasion doesn't help. Before long, Nanny M has settled disputes amongst the cousins and aids the children in rescuing the piglets when Phil lets them out. But, with continuing money problems, a missing in action father, and Phil's tricks, can the family make it through the harvest? This lovely film is a joy. Many thanks to Emma T, who not only stars but wrote and produced it, too. The other cast members, including Gyllenhaal, Smith, Ifans, Ralph Fiennes, the talented children and all of the others, do the film justice, too. McGregor's role is almost a cameo but he's there when it counts. Then, too, the English countryside is gorgeous, the muddy farm not withstanding, and the cinematography is very fine indeed. Therefore, the flick is also a feast for the eyes. Costumes and make-up are wonderful, also, for Gyllenhaal looks so pretty with her bright baby blues and sweetness. The plot is fun and full of life and so is the snappy direction. So, in spite of being a sequel, this movie can stand alone and very well. Nevertheless, a back-to-back viewing of both films will be nice in the near future. Thank you, dear Emma, for giving us these two lovely movies. They are smart, funny, magical, offer great life lessons, and are a splendid return on money spent.
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Not bad, but a few awkward scenes
SpikeHat22 August 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Production and art direction was good. The special effects were adequate. Warning if you like to sit right down & start eating your popcorn; the first part of the movie has lots of sloppy manure to set up the farm scene. I almost hurled! I'd say the minor roles by R.Fiennes and E.McGregor were jerky, and seemed more like cameos.

Kids may enjoy it, even to LOL a few times. However I would say this sad part was, in a word, cruel: **SPOILER** during a picnic, a telegram arrives saying that soldier Dad was killed in action --bummer! The children don't believe he is dead, so the boys visit the "War Office" to find out for sure; turns out the telegram was a forgery by Mom's evil brother so he could get her to sell the family farm. Quite shi++y for a kid's story, eh? This was a big wet blanket compared to the rest of the film's high-jinks. I almost forgot-- a stray "enemy bomb" falls into their barley field, unexploded, and the children rush over to disarm it. Good parenting. Are the kids successful, or not? I wouldn't spoil that scene for you.
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Terrible movie.
IndecisivePigeon30 April 2010
Warning: Spoilers
I am actually really surprised that the IMDb rating for this is so high. I thought this movie was a waste of time and pretty much awful.

I was highly disappointed with this movie actually, being a fan of the first movie I was expecting a good sequel. Boy was I wrong. I must admit the camera work was good and the characters were likable.

I just thought the movie was very drab and boring though. The storyline was very predictable as well. Basically it's just the first movie with a different set of characters. It's seemed to be very short as well, but I don't know if that was because of the fact that I was texting through most of it. I am a 15 year old girl who watched this with her 10 year old brother, who also thought this movie was a bore.
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Very similar to the first film - still enjoyable
paudie1 April 2010
Warning: Spoilers
The second Nanny McPhee movie varies very little from the format of the first. A parent living on their own struggles to cope with a number of "high spirited" children. A magical Nanny appears uninvited to teach the children a few lessons about socially acceptable behaviour, considerably improving her physical appearance as each lesson is learned.

This time Maggie Gyllenhal is the stressed parent. Her husband is away at the war and she struggles to run the farm, especially with debt ridden brother-in-law Rhys Ifans trying to persuade her to sell the farm.

Happily this time the children aren't as insufferable as the first film. They are very helpful around the farm but do not get on with their two visiting posh cousins. Thamkfully Nanny McPhee teaches them the benefits of everyone getting along together.

Written by Emma Thompson the young ones will enjoy the slapstick and chase scenes but adults who have seen the first film may find it a bit repetitive. The acting is generally good. Ms. Gyllenhal's English accent is excellent though her acting veers towards the shrill at times.

An enjoyable if unoriginal children's film
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Stellar Cast - Pity they forgot a script!
boobic29 March 2010
OK, first things first. The audience I saw this movie with was made up of very young kids and they loved it. So, if you want your children to see a film that is completely harmless with a bit of a moral then this is the movie for you.

If you're looking for an adult friendly film to see along with your rugrats, then think again.

The plot is moronic. The script equally so with Emma Thompson mugging her way through the story as a female Roger Moore, that is, she thinks she can portray all kinds of feelings and emotions by raising an eyebrow. Trust me, she can't! What annoyed me most about this mishmash was the whole 1950's Enid Blyton view of England. That is except this is set in 1940's England during World War II and no-one except for maybe Maggie Gyllenhall has a 1940's haircut! Maybe that's a small thing but if they are going to set a movie someplace in time then maybe they should at least adhere to the small facts? Maggie Gyllenhall's English accent is superb, in fact I spent a good part of the first half of the movie trying to work out where I'd seen her before she was that good.

Ralph Fiennes, wasted. Sam Kelly, doing an English version of his 'Tler character from 'Allo 'Allo. Ewen McGregor coming on at the end to snog Maggie.

Sorry, superb cast. Totally wasted!
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Nanny McPhee is back........ its like Aladdin 2 all over again.
majic_is21 March 2010
Warning: Spoilers
errrrr...... well....... Don't bother unless its a Tuesday afternoon, its raining, its half term and the kids are screaming "im bored". They will enjoy it, but the potential for the adults to enjoy it goes out of the window after you have seen all the actor enter. It just doesn't have any real depth,plot or point to it. One of the biggest gripes with this, is the cast is excellent, so it annoys me to see Rhys Ifans, Ewan McGregor, Bill Bailey,Maggie Smith, Katy Brand and obviously Emma Thompson all just looking like they have turned up for some pocket money, or something to do for a couple of weeks. I mean that cast is superb and better than some of the huge block-busters that are out. But when the story is just plain dull, the saying comes to mind that you cant make a "xxxx" beautiful. LOL

Personally I actually didn't mind the first film (As I'm more of a thriller/horror kind of guy) because it had a point to it. With a single father looking after 7 children who are running wild and scaring off every nanny that he hires. So McPhee enters and saves the day. But this didn't have a point. It just had a family effected by the war, were the father is away all the time, so the children have to, and seemed keen enough to, help out around the farm. I mean looking into it they seemed happy enough, and did more work and appreciated family values than most kids in the world today. The mother leaves them at home every day to go work in the local shop, so they completely run the whole farm by themselves. So just because some city children turn up and they have a bit of a fight with the culture clashes, that means that they need good ole Nanny McPhee to sort em out. UH?? A good slap and early bed I say. DONE!! No need for the film. (P.S I don't condone violence to children)

The only good thing this film offers, is the swimming pigs, which my nieces cant stop chatting about and thought it was the best bit of the film. So did I to be fair. But thats about as much magic and fun there is in this film. My Nieces were quite positive about the film overall, and were pleased to of watched it, but I feel that kids films should appeal, or at least create some entertainment for the adults. (who pay for the tickets in the first place) I think most kids will enjoy this film but its no epic. If Nanny McPhee were a TV series, then this would be the rubbish one where she fixes a family who don't really need fixing. Oh and also there isn't a BIG BANG!!!!!
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If u liked the first one you might not like this one
eve_dolluk18 May 2010
I enjoyed the first Nanny Mcphee film a few years ago and I am in my 30's. The first film had a structure and a story that all the family could enjoy. The Big Bang starts OK and there is much anticipation to Nanny Mcphee's arrival. The plot starts similar to the first one with naughty kids, nanny Mcphee's first method at punishing them and teaching them to be better behaved is overly violent and psychologically distressing. Things then get very random indeed, things are fleetingly mentioned and then get forgotten about. Things appear for no reason and no explanation. Now kids will actually enjoy this as they will find these sort of things fun and cute. For an older member of the family they will be totally confused.

Overall I thought the SFX was weak and the second half of the film lacked much of Nanny Mcphee's character, yeah she was there but didn't say or do much.

The story took a turn randomly which wasn't a problem really except they seemed to leave out a proper ending.

Overall I think kids will enjoy it as its quirky and fast paced but really makes no sense and is very disjointed.

The child actors are not up to par with the first one but again kids will miss this.

I give it 5/10 but kids will surely rate it higher
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A movie for kids.....and only kids
xJags9 August 2010
I didn't have high expectations for this movie going in to watch it and it was predictable for any problem that came about.The storyline was good with the stuck up,rich kids eventually warming up and becoming humble,the whole farm story and the role Nanny McPhee played. The movie is entertaining from children and maybe some parents however there was nothing to really hold you to the movie.Certain movie just have you glued to it but this was not one of them.If you are over the age of 12,you will be able to predict most of this movie.It had its moments where the lessons were being taught and the whole drama about the farm which got your sympathy however that is all it got-sympathy. All in all,wait for this to come out on DVD and if the kids insist you take them,don't expect anything great.
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Not as good as the first movie, but I found it to be entertaining
Argemaluco15 December 2010
I liked Nanny McPhee very much because of its naughty sense of humor, honest emotions and excellent performances from actors who did not underrate their presence in a family movie.I guess I was not the only person who thought like that, because the film had an unexpected economical success, which is the reason we now have its obligatory sequel, called Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang.And even though it lacks of the refreshing originality from the first movie, I have to admit this sequel kept me entertained, although it did not find it to be very memorable.

Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang feels like a rehash of Mary Poppins, even though it is inspired on the literary series of Nurse Matilda, written by Christianna Brand.But in the hands of Emma Thompson in her screenwriter facet, Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang has a likable balance of politically incorrect humor and a sincere didactic message of an innocent intention and invaluable utility.Having said that, I found the structure from the film to be a bit modular, with a parade of comical routines, domestic crisis and family dramas solved by special effects or by the expected morals that teach the children a lesson of moderation, cooperation and discipline.

As for the actors, Thompson always feels credible in her character, something which is enriched by the subtle expressions she has on various scenes.Maggie Gyllenhaal is perfect as a British woman, and not only because of the accent she adopts, but also because of her general bearing and attitude.Maggie Smith, Rhys Ifans and Ralph Fiennes also bring competent performances, even though they do not have too much material to work with.

In conclusion, I liked Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang, even though it is not even remotely as funny, ingenious or subversive as the first film.Nevetheless, I think I can recommend it.
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Fair kids film then they drop a bomb on the whole thing
SnoopyStyle26 December 2013
It's WWII Britain, and 2 spoiled rich kids (Rosie Taylor-Ritson, Eros Vlahos) are sent to their relatives in the countryside. Isabel Green (Maggie Gyllenhaal) is haggard running a farm and a store while her husband is away for the war. Her 3 children (Oscar Steer, Asa Butterfield, Lil Woods) clash with their rich bratty cousins. Meanwhile, brother Phil (Rhys Ifans) is trying to steal the farm to repay a gambling debt. In desperation, she calls in help from Nanny McPhee (Emma Thompson). The formula is already known. Nanny McPhee teaches everybody lessons. Once the lessons are learned, Nanny McPhee leaves. "When you need me but do not want me, then I must stay. When you want me but no longer need me, then I have to go."

Maggie Gyllenhaal's accent and the cartoonish countryside are somewhat off-putting. All the poo and all the syrup makes it all seem very sticky and uncomfortable. It is nice to see the combative kids turn likable friends. However, I didn't like brother Phil's story. He's a bad unnecessary distraction from the main lessons to be learned, and doesn't work as comic relief. I think the missing father is the biggest story for those kids once they start getting along. There is no need for the brother and his scheming. Then they drop a giant bomb on the whole thing. I don't really get it. It doesn't fit a kid's movie.
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Heartwarming and simply superb
robertg206 January 2019
Warning: Spoilers
This is even better than the first movie!! A beautiful tale of love and faith and a bit of magic. Really tugs at the heart strings. Sublimely acted and you can't ever go wrong with watching the inimitable Dame Maggie Smith who is revealed to be baby Aggy from the first film - this was a wonderful twist and tied the two movies together beautifully. Throughly recommended!
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She comes when you need her the most and want her the least, and she leaves when you want her the most and need her the least.
gradyharp20 June 2011
Emma Thompson is an artist of s many gifts that she defies categorization. In addition to being one of our best actresses of the day, she is also a very fine writer and not at all afraid of jumping into 'family movies' that bundle fun as well as sage advice. Her she has written and stars in NANNY MCPHEE RETURNS and lets hope this isn't her last visit.

Nanny McPhee appears as a grotesquely ugly woman who arrives in households besotted with potential disasters and in the course of her manipulations of the microcosm that initiated the problems she has a sense of magic in reversing the behavior patterns of children and adults to bring about a happy ending to a crisis waiting to happen. This trip finds her visiting the farm of Isabel Green (Maggie Gyllenhaal) whose husband (Ewan McGregor) is off at war, leaving the care of the three children and the farm and life in general in her hands. Add to that the constant interference of Isabel's pestering brother-in-law (Rhys Ifans) and a battery of spoiled cousins and the madness of a misplaced bomb form the sky and Nanny has her hands full teaching the children not only how to cope but also how to behave in a manner that aids Isabel's survival. Maggie Smith joins this irrepressible cast and in the end it is difficult to judge what entertains most - the madness or the glee. Deep it is not, but it is one of those films you can slip into the telly and enjoy as much as an adult as the youngsters adore it. Fantasy, a bit of family drama, and a lot of fine lessons make this a fluffy movie nearly everyone can enjoy.

Grady Harp
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