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An Education (Scherfig, 2009): Peter Sarsgaard in U.K. period-piece [Archive] - DVD Talk Forum
 
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DVD Reviews

View Full Version : An Education (Scherfig, 2009): Peter Sarsgaard in U.K. period-piece


NoirFan
07-15-09, 05:59 PM
Synopsis: "An Education" is the story of a teenage girl's coming-of-age set in 1961 London, a city caught between the drab, post-war 1950s and the glamorous, more liberated decade to come. Jenny (Carey Mulligan) stands on the brink of becoming a woman: a brilliantly witty and attractive 16-year-old whose suburban life is about to be blown apart by the utterly unsuitable 30-something David (Peter Sarsgaard). Urbane and witty, David manages to charm her conservative parents Jack (Alfred Molina) and Marjorie (Cara Seymour). David introduces Jenny to a glittering new world of classical concerts and late-night suppers with his attractive friend and business partner, Danny (Dominic Cooper) and Danny's girlfriend, the beautiful but vacuous Helen (Rosamund Pike). Just as Jenny's family's long-held dream of getting their brilliant daughter into Oxford seems within reach, Jenny is tempted by another kind of life.

http://i226.photobucket.com/albums/dd114/besh1/aneducationposter.jpg


Trailer (http://movies.yahoo.com/movie/1810007089/video/14502532)
IMDb (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1174732/)

Daytripper
07-15-09, 06:29 PM
Screenplay by Nick Hornby. His first. That alone has me there.

NoirFan
10-08-09, 05:20 PM
Clip (http://www.apple.com/trailers/sony/aneducation/)

Groucho
10-08-09, 05:21 PM
Sally Sparrow!

Daytripper
11-12-09, 01:42 AM
What a terrific film. Currently at 93% on RT. Carey Mulligan will surely get a Best Actress nomination as will Nick Hornby for his screenplay. Definitely one of the year's best.

tylergfoster
11-12-09, 02:38 AM
I'm the only DVDTalk critic who didn't like it. I don't know why, but my guess is because I could relate to none of it at all. I understand my horizons are limited, but I'm a very average 21st-century, young guy. I'm not particularly interested in travel or foreign places and I wouldn't call myself an especially cultured person, so the life that Mulligan's character is so enamored of not only seemed almost entirely disinteresting to me, but there's also no way I buy either Sarsgaard as this smooth-talking suave guy (he's always seemed a little creepy to me when he "turns on the 'charm'") or the idea that Mulligan would go for it, for any reason. The entire time I wondered why she couldn't see what she was doing to herself or why she wasn't horribly repulsed by Sarsgaard's character (seriously, the idea that 100% of 16-year-old girls would not run in vocal disgust during the scene where Sarsgaard just asks to look at Mulligan naked is unfathomable to me, I just don't buy it). Some of this goes for Molina and Seymour as well; I couldn't reconcile the fact that Molina would chew out someone Mulligan's age for the tiniest nitpicky things but be totally taken by Sarsgaard's routine.I did like some of the acting (Mulligan, Molina, Olivia Williams, to a lesser extent Dominic Cooper and Rosamund Pike) and the occasional touch of directing (it's got a spirited opening), but on the whole I was pretty disappointed by it.

Superman07
11-12-09, 09:58 AM
Sally Sparrow!

This sounded interesting, but this means I must see it. :)

zekeburger1979
12-28-09, 10:59 PM
I just got back from seeing this wonderful movie. Carey Mulligan is the centerpoint of the movie and she delivers a star-making performance. Playing a 16 year old English girl in the early 1960's who aspires to be knowledgeable in all things worldly, Carey shows her as a girl who is naive in certain aspects of adult life, but wise and mature enough to learn from the hard lessons she encounters over the course of the movie. Comparisons have been made between Carey and Audrey Hepburn and they are well deserved, especially in the scenes in Paris which are short but satisfying.

The supporting cast, Alfred Molina, Peter Sarsgaard, Emma Thompson, Olivia Williams, Sally Hawkins and Rosamund Pike are all terrific thanks to a sharp and sparkling screenplay by Nick Hornby.

One of the year's best. 4 stars.

LickTheABCs
12-28-09, 11:04 PM
The acting was good, but it left me bored.

Not enough ninjas or zombies.

Patman
01-01-10, 11:11 PM
Finally saw this after hearing good thing about Carey Mulligan's performance, and she does deliver a solid turn as Jenny, a smart young girl of 16 soon to be 17 imbued with a mission to make it to Oxford, but those plans are interrupted when a chance meeting in the rain with David (Peter Sarsgaard), an older man who takes a liking to Jenny. Soon David introduces Jenny to a life outside of books, Jenny is seduced by this other life and soon questions the value of an Oxford education.

The supporting cast is actually pretty good, as it features Alfred Molina has Jenny's dad, Emma Thompson as Jenny's head mistress at her school, Olivia Williams as one of Jenny's teacher who sees great promise in Jenny, Rosamond Pike as a somewhat ambition-less girlfriend/wife of David's friend Danny.

But as good as some of the work is from the supporting cast, the film is hampered by a script that doesn't have enough bite to it, and I wasn't really buying Sarsgaard as the character of David. Still, Carey Mulligan is the reason to see the film because she is really good in the film, and exhibited good screen presence.

I give it 3 stars, or a grade of B (mainly for Carey Mulligan's performance which is a shoo-in for a best actress Oscar nomination).

Coral
01-02-10, 12:15 AM
I enjoyed this film quite a bit.

The dialog was smart and I actually found it believable that:

Jenny would fall for David's BS. She's a smart cookie with a good head on her shoulders, but she's lead such a secluded and protected life that David is a breath of fresh air for her and offers so much excitement. She was sucked in and even though she started to have doubts with regards to the map, she found a way to justify it because she doesn't want to lose what she thinks she has. David's character was a perfect balance of being charming yet creepy/suspect. The request for Jenny to show herself partially naked and the banana idea really showed where David's maturity level is. As for the father, his whole idea for Jenny was to give her a secure life - whether it was via her own way at Oxford or simply by marrying a successful man. He was eager to accept David because of this.

The major success of the film is the Jenny character and the performance by Carey Mulligan. Jenny's extremely smart yet stupid, wise yet naive. She's definetely not a one dimensional character. Mulligan's performance was pitch-perfect. She really did come across as someone who's experiencing some excitement for the first time in her life and still come across in fine form in dramatic scenes. She lights up the screen with her enthusiasm and really is adorable. She's almost 25 but is believable as a 16 year old. When watching it I was hoping Mulligan was in her 20's because I felt like a pervert (like the David character). ;)

I give it a solid 8 out of 10.

TheySentYou
01-02-10, 01:26 AM
i, too, gave it an 8/10

solid film with rapid-fire, tasteful dialogue. the story itself was mildly powerful, yet in conveying passage into womanhood, i think we've already seen one too many over-powered, shock-value films involving the loss of womanly innocence to where this exercise in subtle values of femininity could be considered a breath of fresh air. the performances were pitch-perfect, as well.

movieking
01-29-10, 09:03 PM
Finally got around to seeing it, and I enjoyed it, but I don't think that it is exactly a must see. I wasn't sure what to expect after hearing Tony Kornheiser talking about it on the radio, saying how anti-Semitic he thought the movie was. While obviously her father is not a fan of Jews, I didn't think that the movie was in any way anti-Semetic (as Mel Gibson would say, Kornheiser has a dog in this fight).

Yavin
02-03-10, 10:52 AM
Just saw this as well and thoroughly enjoyed it, though I think a lot of it had to do with Carey Mulligan and her performance. She sort of reminded me of Renee Zellweger (in terms of facial expressions) and Bridget Moynahan (in terms of looks). I did find the whole Jenny/David relationship a bit creepy and unrealistically quick to get off the ground, but the dialogue and the performances made up for it.

PopcornTreeCt
03-27-10, 10:09 PM
I just finished watching this and really enjoyed it. I expected more out of Carey Mulligan's performance. It was fascinating to me, the dialogue was pretty good.

Overall, as a film it was pretty solid.

Idioteque...
03-27-10, 11:17 PM
I thought it was so lame. I mean it was an alright movie but worthy of any of the praise it's getting? Hell no.

taa455
04-05-10, 02:37 PM
Good film. I, too, was cynical of the father being soooo trusting of the guy, especially since his daughter was only 16. Also when the big reveal finally happens, I was thinking "aw jeez, not THIS shit again." Seems like a far too often used plot device. Great performance by Mulligan, but I thought Saarsgard was not quite suave enough and a bit too "creepy", as another poster put it, to really believe it never caused any concerns or "red flags" for Mulligan and/or her parents in the film.

Indy Jones Fan
04-06-10, 08:29 AM
I'm the only DVDTalk critic who didn't like it. I don't know why, but my guess is because I could relate to none of it at all. I understand my horizons are limited, but I'm a very average 21st-century, young guy. I'm not particularly interested in travel or foreign places and I wouldn't call myself an especially cultured person, so the life that Mulligan's character is so enamored of not only seemed almost entirely disinteresting to me, but there's also no way I buy either Sarsgaard as this smooth-talking suave guy (he's always seemed a little creepy to me when he "turns on the 'charm'") or the idea that Mulligan would go for it, for any reason. The entire time I wondered why she couldn't see what she was doing to herself or why she wasn't horribly repulsed by Sarsgaard's character (seriously, the idea that 100% of 16-year-old girls would not run in vocal disgust during the scene where Sarsgaard just asks to look at Mulligan naked is unfathomable to me, I just don't buy it). Some of this goes for Molina and Seymour as well; I couldn't reconcile the fact that Molina would chew out someone Mulligan's age for the tiniest nitpicky things but be totally taken by Sarsgaard's routine.I did like some of the acting (Mulligan, Molina, Olivia Williams, to a lesser extent Dominic Cooper and Rosamund Pike) and the occasional touch of directing (it's got a spirited opening), but on the whole I was pretty disappointed by it.
I have to agree with your spoilered comments especially regarding Jenny's parents. Mulligan's performance was top-notch though and for that alone I gave the movie my own personal grade of B+.

Dr Mabuse
04-06-10, 08:55 AM
I thought I posted in this thread.

What fantastic film this was. Man it was a breath of fresh air.

Oh yeah I posted about it in the Oscar thread...

nmr1723
04-06-10, 01:22 PM
I thought I posted in this thread.

What fantastic film this was. Man it was a breath of fresh air.

Oh yeah I posted about it in the Oscar thread...

Agreed...maybe it was just Carrie Mulligan...but I enjoyed the hell out of this film. I gave it 4/5 on Netflix...and it's at least that.

The Antipodean
04-06-10, 07:45 PM
Really enjoyed this. Carey Mulligan was great, she should've beaten Sandra Bullock for the Oscar frankly.

Dr Mabuse
04-06-10, 07:51 PM
Every actor in this was excellent, Molina was terrific.

The director handled it with such skill.

It was better the second time through.

Solid Snake
04-06-10, 07:55 PM
Really enjoyed this. Carey Mulligan was great, she should've beaten Sandra Bullock for the Oscar frankly.

very much so.

dolphinboy
04-06-10, 11:12 PM
I'd give it a B, in large part because of Mulligan's performance. It was a "good" movie, but I didn't think it was great and probably couldn't or wouldn't want to watch it again. She mostly certainly gave a better performance than Bullock.

I saw another small of hers get reviewed on At the Movies and the movie didn't fare to tell with the reviewers, but they both once again raved about her performance.

I know people hate Stewart, I think mostly because of the Twilight movies, but there are some really great young actresses right now.

Stewart, Fanning, Kendrick, Mulligan, and Seyfried among others. Those 5 alone make me want to look out for and probably see anything they do.

PopcornTreeCt
04-06-10, 11:47 PM
Stewart, Fanning, Kendrick, Mulligan, and Seyfried among others. Those 5 alone make me want to look out for and probably see anything they do.

Well, I have to disagree. I don't think Stewart is that good even in her non-Twilight roles. Haven't made a verdict yet on Fanning, her child star might as well be another person, cause she has to start all over again. I really liked Anna Kendrick in Up in the Air but I fear that could have been a one shot deal. Mulligan may turn out to be good. Amanda Seyfried has the most potential and already proven herself, to me at least, with what she has done.