Saving Mr Banks

Saving Mr Banks

Category : Uncategorized

Saving Mr Banks is one of those Sunday afternoon films that you watch when your in need a lazy day, a day for curling up on the sofa, watching movies and eating a fantastic Sunday lunch.  Saving Mr Banks stars Emma Thompson as P.L Travers and Tom Hanks as Walt Disney and you just know that it will be one of those feel good films.

On the surface Saving Mr Banks is all about Walt Disney trying desperately to buy the rights to Helen Goff’s (psuednym -P.L Travers) Mary Poppins; yes we know he got the rights so why make a film? And yes it’s a sugar coated version of the real truth as from googling their relationship it was far more  volatile than the film portrays!

However Saving Mr Banks shows a women damaged by her childhood through an alcoholic parent and her wish that she could have saved him and a man who had little or no childhood!

Helen Goff’s father died at 43 from tuberculosis but struggled with alcoholism and Walt Disney worked on his father’s paper round in all weathers, early mornings late nights.  Both will have missed out on so much of their childhood through responsibility and loyalty.

Survivors of alcoholic parents like Helen often share similar characteristics; John Bradshaw explains this really well in his book The Family, which states these characteristics:

  • Addictive, Compulsive behaviour (or marry addicts)
  • Delusion and Denial
  • Unmercifully  Judgemental of self or others
  • Lack of good boundaries
  • Tolerate inappropiate behaviour
  • Constantly seeking approval
  • Have difficulty with intimate relationships
  • Incur guilt whenever they stand up for themseleves
  • Lie when it would be just as easy to tell the truth
  • Disabled will
  • Reactors rather than actors
  • Extremaly Loyal to a fault
  • Numbed Out
  • Over react to changes over which there is no control
  • Feel different from other people
  • Anxious-hypervigilent
  • Low self worth and innnternalised Shame
  • Confuse Love with Pity
  • Overly Serious
  • Have difficulty finishing projects
  • Overly dependant and terrified of abandonment
  • Live life as Victims
  • Intimdated by anger and personal criticism
  • Control Madness
  • Super Responsible or Super Irresponsible

How many of these characteristics did Emma Thompson portray in Saving Mr Banks?


Saving Mr Banks provided an insight to an iconic woman and a formidable man’s background.  Perhaps explaining the reasons for why they were the way they were and proves shows that even successful people wear masks in order to protect themselves!  Yes, maybe the mask appeared to make P.L Travers appear to be for want of a better word a ”Bitch” who could never be pleased and Walt Disney appeared to have missed out on a childhood but then went on to develop Disney World (a place for kids and adults to play)!