Saturday, March 6, 2010

An Education


In Britain in the 1960s, a 16-year-old student who stands a fairly good chance of attending Oxford University is lured away from her studies (and from the boredom she suffers at home with her parents) by a much older, well-off man. He's old enough that the relationship seems a little bit creepy, but not so old that it seems implausible. In fact, though her friends and parents at first seem surprised, they eventually accept the romance and encourage it. The age difference aside, something seems wrong with the pair from the start. Is it the man's job that is sinister? Or something else? Why is he single and pursuing a girl so young? Why does she never visit his home?

The title of this film is perfect: the protagonist is seen abandoning one sort of education and in the process gaining another. My favorite part of the movie is the girl's father, played by Alfred Molina, with vigor. But its pros can't overcome its cons, most notably a predictable plot we've seen before all-too-often. When we left the theater, we felt like we hadn't seen anything new or particularly interesting.

Brooke: C
Grant: C+

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