BLU-RAY/DVD REVIEWS

003797Reviews & Counting
SEARCH BY TITLE # A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
An Education
BLU-RAY disk
04.26.2010 By: Jason Adams
An Education order download
Director:
Lone Scherfig

Actors:
Carey Mulligan
Peter Sarsgaard
Alfred Molina

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

star Printer-Friendly version
comment
WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A 16 year old girl with a bright future falls for a dashing and sophisticated man nearly twice her age and learns a valuable lesson.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Even if I thought AN EDUCATION was an unbelievably fantastic movie, I’d still be hesitant to recommend it due to how creepy it is. Not that a movie can’t be offputting and still be good, but for the kind of whimsical romance and realistic coming-of-age drama they were going for…it just doesn’t feel right.

At the heart of it is a screenplay by popular author Nick Hornby (“High Fidelity,” “About A Boy”), whose books and film adaptations are lighthearted but still pack a very realistic emotional punch. A similar type story is present somewhere in AN EDUCATION, but the tone is all wrong. I know it’s set in Britain in the 1960’s when cultural norms and societal laws may have been different, but I had a seriously difficult time accepting the basic premise of the movie—a guy in his 30s seducing and dating a 16 year old high school student. (Bonus Ick Factor: Her parents are okay with it because the guy is rich!) Even though, as the title suggests, the film doesn’t ultimately glorify their ungodly union, it does romanticize it in the way it’s portrayed for most of the movie and it’s just really uncomfortable that entire time. (Especially the more intimate scenes—“Can I just see them?” Gross.) The whole affair is so confident, especially with Hornby’s flippant dialogue and penchant for likable characters, that it felt like there was something wrong with me for being bothered by a romance that by today’s standards would end up on Dateline NBC.

Even if the plot doesn’t dissuade you, unfortunately as a film itself, I wasn’t super impressed. I definitely didn’t see why this got a Best Picture nomination over other, better movies last year. Granted, the acting was fantastic (Carey Mulligan deserves every ounce of praise she got for her bold, transformative performance), but besides that there was nothing about AN EDUCATION that really stood out to me. We’ve seen similar coming of age dramas in situation, setting and timeframe done better, not to mention with at least 70% less pedophilia! I feel like I could’ve stomached the first two-thirds of the film had the payoff made it worth it, but the ending was the film’s weakest suit. The resolution with Peter Sarsgaard’s character isn’t satisfying, the lesson learned has clearly been in your face the whole time, and the entire conclusion of the movie (where the act of the title should be taking place) is rushed and simplified in a way that does a serious disservice to everything we sat through before it.

I’ll highlight the performances again, because if there’s a reason to watch AN EDUCATION it’s to see the solid work from leads Mulligan and Sarsgaard, as well as great supporting turns from Alfred Molina, Cara Seymour, Emma Thompson, Olivia Williams and even Bond girl Rosamund Pike. Just be prepared to feel like a creeper afterwards.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary by director Lone Scherfig and stars Carey Mulligan and Peter Sarsgaard: The trio has great chemistry together, and their humorous and entertaining banter kind of helped to relieve the tension I felt from the story. They definitely get how the film comes across, but they seem to be okay with it in service of the story.

Deleted Scenes: Eleven cut segments (about 15 minutes) ranging from more time at Jenny’s school to an alternate ending.

Making Of: A few short but interesting interviews clocking in under 10 minutes.

Walking the Red Carpet: Footage and more interviews from the film’s L.A. premiere, which feels like it should’ve been held in Paris.

Trailers and Previews.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
You can claim I don’t “get” this movie, but I saw AN EDUCATION in the theater and you could collectively feel the entire audience squirm uncomfortably through most of it, and not in a good way. The performances are great, especially by Carey Mulligan (who’s going to no doubt be a big star in the future), and it’s a fine piece of cinema, but I just had a hard time enjoying a lighthearted movie about a child predator.

Extra Tidbit: Thankfully Carey Mulligan was actually 22 when she filmed this, not 16.
Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

Best Selling

| March 2017 More Best Selling
  • 1
    Fantastic Beasts
  • 2
    Sing
  • 3
    Moana
  • 4
    Doctor Strange
  • 5
    Fifty Shades Darker

Featured Youtube Videos

Views and Counting