Bedknobs And Broomsticks Let Angela Lansbury Give One Of The Most Enjoyable Performances Of All Time

“Bedknobs and Broomsticks” takes place in 1940, during the Battle of Britain. Three children are evacuated from London to the nearby countryside, where they are put into the care of Lansbury’s Miss Price, an eccentric recluse who would rather mind her own business on her oddball estate. She doesn’t know what to do with children and the kids don’t really like her all that much, but once she reveals that she’s learning how to be a witch via a correspondence school, they become fascinated. She’s learned magic in order to fight the Nazis, but there’s just one problem: the school has closed and she cannot learn the final spell. The kids join her on a magical flying bed that can travel through time and dimensions in order to find the fabled final spell and hopefully fight back to save their home. 

Julie Andrews’ Mary Poppins and Miss Price pretty much only share the “magical woman taking care of children” title, because otherwise, they’re nothing alike. Poppins is sweet and quick-witted, while Miss Price is sarcastic and quick to admit her own lack of understanding of things. Miss Price is a kickass single middle-aged woman from a time when that would have her dubbed an “Old Maid,” but you get the feeling that she is single by choice, outside of the occasional flirtation with the “Professor.” A number of ridiculously strange things happen in “Bedknobs and Broomsticks,” and Price rolls with the punches. Lansbury approaches the character with a lackadaisical, adventurous attitude that makes her immediately lovable. 

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