Don't call it 'Mary Poppins' redux: Charlize Theron and Mackenzie Davis say 'Tully' is closer to 'Training Day'

Kevin Polowy
Senior Correspondent, Yahoo Entertainment

Is Tully the next-gen Mary Poppins? The new Diablo Cody-scripted drama centers on a struggling family whose lives are sprinkled with a figurative spoonful of sugar by the arrival of a cheery night nurse, so you can understand why folks  are drawing the comparisons.

But Mackenzie Davis, who plays the eponymous helper, isn’t having it.

“I really think it’s its own thing,” Davis told Yahoo Entertainment during a recent interview, where she was joined by Charlize Theron, who plays Marlo, a depressed mom coping with the arrival of an unplanned third child. “Yes, it’s about a nanny, but it’s neither The Hand That Rocks the Cradle nor Mary Poppins.

Theron, meanwhile, likened Tully to an entirely different film in an entirely different genre from an entirely different era: Training Day.

“It’s more like a Training Day,” agreed Davis (Halt and Catch Fire, Blade Runner 2049), noting that Tully could have something in common with the 2001 thriller about a corrupt narcotics officer (Denzel Washington) who introduces a rookie cop (Ethan Hawke) to the mean streets of Los Angeles. “Especially that ride-along sequence.”

Despite the fact that Marlo’s on child No. 3, there’s no doubt that Tully takes her on an eye-opening journey. (So, for the record, Davis is Denzel in this comparison.)

For an actual riff on Miss Poppins and the Banks gang, wait no further than Christmas. That’s when Disney will release the new Emily Blunt-starring sequel, Mary Poppins Returns.

Tully is now playing in select theaters.

Charlize Theron talks about struggling with depression after putting on weight for the role:

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