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An Education (2009) Review

Coming Of Age Drama Romance


Director: Lone Scherfig

Cast: Carey Mulligan, Peter Sarsgaard, Alfred Molina, Dominic Cooper

Runtime: 1h 40 mins

A coming-of-age story about a teenage girl in 1960s suburban London, and how her life changes with the arrival of a playboy nearly twice her age.

Set in 1960s suburban London, Jenny (Carey Mulligan) is a 16 year-old smart and bright schoolgirl who is preparing to go to Oxford university to study English. From learning Latin to playing the cello, Jenny is doing everything she can to get accepted to Oxford.

However, her life changes when she meets David Goldman (Peter Sarsgaard), a man over twice her age. Jenny is smitten with David and as they begin to spend more time together, David spoils Jenny with expensive gifts and introduces her to his exquisite, lavish and luxurious lifestyle. David gets along well with Jenny’s parents and Jenny befriends David’s friends Danny (Dominic Cooper) and Helen (Rosamund Pike).

As jenny’s relationship with David progress, her focus is no longer on her studies. Jenny is now torn between her education and David. Her father (Alfred Molina) says to marry him and not to worry about her education, whereas her teacher says to focus on her education and not to ruin her future over a man.

Due to her relationship, Jenny starts questioning going to oxford and doesn’t see the point of going to university to study English to become a teacher. A life she believes is boring and unexciting, unlike what she is currently experiencing with David and his friends.

An education is not what I expected in a good way. It is a charming, wonderful and smart film where the main character truly comes of age. Carey Mulligan is the star of the show with her fantastic and sweet performance as Jenny. The cast is great, they too gave solid performances. It is a well-written film and I liked the story. It focuses more on Jenny coming of age and how her life changes, which adds more elements to the story, rather than just focusing on the romance side of the story (the relationship between David and Jenny).

Similar movies: elegy


  • Fantastic performance from Carey Mulligan
  • Well-written
  • Surprising twist


Overall a well-written, charming and superb movie with a smart story, great cast and amazing performances.


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