On its face, ‘An Education’ is a film set in the 1960s about a young girl Jenny coming to age. Her family or rather her father’s reason of existence is to ensure that she gets into Oxford, even if it is only so that she finds a suitable groom. Her life completely changes when she meets a much older man David who seems to charm everyone off their feet. David shows her a glimpse of the world of glitz and glamour which in comparison makes her earlier life so mundane.
If you look deeper though, ‘An Education’ is a film about education. In classrooms and outside them. It’s a film that weighs the benefits of a good degree with an uncertain and yet racy life of glamour. It is about growing up to understand priorities and more importantly that often it is not only teenagers who need growing up but elders too.
The leading actress in the film, Carey Mulligan has been recognized by award ceremonies across the globe with multiple nominations and a good number of wins including the BAFTA for An actress in a Leading Role. Her portrayal of Jenny is realistic and unpretentious. It is especially interesting to see how she changes from a shy schoolgirl who cant even stand up to her father into almost a rebel who is not afraid to speak her mind. I wouldn’t go as far as saying that she may just be the follow up to an Audrey Hepburn (her looks qualify her for sure), but she is someone we can hope to get some good performances from in the near future. She is ably supported by the rest of the cast, especially by Peter Sarsgaard who plays David, the man as smooth as butter.
The film is tightly packed with a screenplay that doesn’t let you wander. A film that deserves a watch, even if it is on DVD. And not just for the awards that brought it into the spotlight. But simply because it’s a clean, well made and sweet film.
Rating: 3.5 on 5
Paisa Wasool Moment: The scene where Jenny meets David for the first time and allows him to give her Cello a lift while she walks alongside the car.