As a child I watched Mary Poppins more than once and was even more familiar with the musical numbers on our Disney Musical Collection CD's.
When I went with Aunt Audrie to see Saving Mr. Banks it took my study of Disney to a whole new level. All of a sudden I wanted to know and understand all of the perspectives that went into Mary Poppins. Where were these authors coming from? Was P.L. Travers as bizarre as they portrayed her to be or was she (as we wish many other authors had been) just trying to protect a sacred piece of literature.
So began my journey. I ordered myself a copy of her book. Which, I must say is a wee bit bizarre. I found it very amusing but I did not "laugh and laugh" as Walt Disney's character described his daughters doing in Saving Mr. Banks.This has led me to converse with people I know who would might have remembered the book and I find I have to clarify if their enjoyment was the first publication or in connection with the release of the movie Mary Poppins.
Shortly after...or maybe before, my friend Violet got a hold of a documentary about the Sherman brothers. The Sherman brothers were the composers for Mary Poppins and many other successful movies. This led to a whole new level of insight on Mary Poppins and even other movies. What an evolving exploration of literature and history.
I think in Saving Mr. Banks, the flash backs are in fact from her perspective as a child. I think they are a bit weird and confused because as a young person, she really didn't have the whole picture. My sister and I talk regularly about our childhood and realize that she and I have completely different views on the same events. Or that I may have been very impacted by a certain event while my sister may not even remember it.
I think that in the movie Mary Poppins, Bert represents P.L. Travers' father projection, Mr. Banks represents Disney's father and the kite closing represents the Sherman brothers' father.
*I reserve the right to add and alter as my exploration of the matter evolves.