Bedknobs And Broomsticks (1971)

ROBERT STEVENSON

Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBB

USA, 1971.  Walt Disney Productions.  Screenplay by , , animation story by , , based on the book by .   Cinematography by .   Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by , .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

In this special-effects laden Disney film, three London children are sent out of the city during World War II to avoid dangerous air raids. They go to live with a woman () who they discover is an apprentice witch, and the eldest of the three children blackmails her into sharing her magical secrets with them. Together on a magical bed, they travel to London to visit her professor () who will help her develop a magical locomotion technology that will be helpful in the war effort.

The effects are excellent, and Lansbury seems to be having a good time with the material, but the overall result is a second-rate Mary Poppins with unmemorable songs by Poppins composers Richard and Robert Sherman.

Academy Award:  Best Special Visual Effects
Nominations: Best Art Direction; Best Costume Design; Best Scoring: Adaptation and Original Song Score; Best Original Song (“The Age of Not Believing”)

Golden Globe Award Nomination:  Best Actress-Musical/Comedy (Angela Lansbury)

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