Friday, 6 November 2009

Mini Review - 'An Education'

I finally understand the buzz about Carey Mulligan.
She shows wonderful potential as an actress and gives a very careful and detailed performance in Lone Scherfig's lovely, if slight film.
The story of this intelligent young girl trying hard to get the grades to get into Oxford University until she is swept away by a handsome man is well worth seeking out.
The dynamic of her family life rings true as she deals with living out the dreams of her overbearing yet easily manipulated father, however I was never really convinced of the central relationship between Mulligans' Jenny and Sarsgasrds' David.
Perhaps it was because, as good as Mulligan was, she never convinced me of her naivety when it came to being charmed by a man who was so obviously not all he seemed to be. It could have been, for me at least, that her actual age showed through in her performance.

Along side Mulligan, the acting honours go to Oliva Williams as the stern by caring Miss Stubs, Alfred Molina as Jenny's gullible father and in a brief scene, Sally Hawkins nails her character. The person who walks away with the movie in terms of acting is the wonderful Rosamund Pike as the delightfully scatty and fun loving Helen. She, the most uneducated member of the bunch, is the one having the most fun. She is living the glamorous life Jenny wants so desperately, and much shrewder by learning to compromise.
For all the talk of getting an education, Helen is there as the voice saying how over rated it all is.

Grade - B-

* note:

I was so drawn to 'Dancer in the Darks' Cara Seymour as Marjorie. I kept expecting her to deliver a flooring speech or moment of absolute pure motherly wisdom and emotion. It was as though her body was barely able to contain all she wanted to do and say. I know this was Mulligans show, but I was so drawn to this small performance.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yup Carey Mulligan is great in An Education. But what about the ending? Slightly let the rest of the excellent film down I think. The voice over, I mean.
More on this here if you're interested.