Revolution, Utopia and Mary Poppins

Here’s a brief trip that I thoroughly believe in:


The elaborate rooftop chimney sweep dance in "Mary Poppins" always moves me more than something in a cartoonish movie should. There is so much to it, both as a number in itself and how it blows away all the pretenses of reality for a few moments. It emerges and just as abruptly disappears like some 100 year blooming desert flower. It is the joyful revolution always just beneath the surface of the deadening System.

See also where Michael refuses to invest his tuppence in the bank (and ends up buying material to make and fly a kite). It is a revolutionary moment in a very small act. The whole staid banking system comes down (and comes down on him).


Even now Utopia can break through in the unlikeliest of places, however briefly.

I read somewhere about an academic complaining about the Captain’s use of the word “hottentots”. That missed the point entirely. The Empire was coming down, joy was breaking through.




4 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

When Ernest tried to transcribe their conversation from memory years later, everything he could come up with was slightly off: "Do you hear them out there? Goading each other on? Dozens of voices. The