An Education Review

6 Apr

An Education

Starring: Carey Mulligan, Peter Skarsgaard, Alfred Molina

Director: Lone Scherfig

A beautiful performance by a relatively new actress helped define the Oscar nominated film, An Education.   

Set in London in 1961, An Education is the story of 16-year-old, Jenny (Carey Mulligan), and her journey from everyday high school student to worldly woman.  While studying to get into Oxford University and appease her father (Alfred Molina), Jenny becomes frustrated with her simpleton life. 

When it appears that her life is going to be planned out for her, she comes into contact with David (Peter Sarsgaard), a much older man who develops an infatuation with the young student.  Not being bothered with the age factor, the two become close and David shows Jenny a world she never could have imagined existed.

While being exposed to new people and new experiences, Jenny must decide whether her new life is worth giving up everything she had previously worked for.  The decision won’t be an easy one as she is conflicted by the opinions of those closest to her.  She also learns that the initial excitement and danger associated with acting older than she is may be more than she can handle.

Mulligan was phenomenal in this role.  This was my first experience seeing her as an actress and I was blown away.  She had a young Audrey Hepburn resemblance at many points during this film.  Up against strong, veteran actors in Sarsgaard and Molina, Mulligan stood out and lit up the screen.  She was able to transition from naive girl to classy woman in a blink of an eye. 

I think Sarsgaard always does such great work.  He has managed to pick roles that are so well-developed.  From Shattered Glass and Garden State to Jarhead, he always manages to steal the scenes he’s in.  Molina was pretty endearing in the role of Jenny’s father.  Although he is tough on her, he still finds ways to shine while on-screen.  He can play angel or devil and still be likeable to an audience.

Without giving away the ending, this film impressed me in the way it wrapped up the story.  It wasn’t what I expected, but I thought it ended in a way that was positive and empowering.  In addition, even though the setting of this film occurred 50 years ago and is a drama, I still found it to be a source of escapism.

This movie was very well done and I would absolutely recommend it.  Mulligan has a lengthy career ahead of her, if this film is any indication.   

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4 Responses to “An Education Review”

  1. hannahpoturalski April 8, 2010 at 10:16 pm #

    Great review, now I am even more looking forward to seeing it. I recently picked it up but haven’t found the time yet.

    • Carrie April 8, 2010 at 11:24 pm #

      Thanks! It’s really good, it’s been awhile since I liked a movie like this one.

  2. Christopher April 6, 2010 at 6:48 pm #

    After watching AN EDUCATION, I’m dreaming of one day working with Carey Mulligan – she’s fantastic!

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