Saturday, December 26, 2009
Review: An Education
So, let's see... An Education. I really enjoyed this movie and I did not have very high expectations so it did not disappoint me.
It's about a very bright and pretty London schoolgirl, Jenny (Carey Mulligan), who meets a much older man, David and soon their relationship turns out to be different from what was expected. Just like David himself.
What Oscar does this movie deserve? In my opinion, Best Screenplay (not sure if this is adapted or original), because the writing was so clever and excellent, I really liked the dialogues, but I don't think that it has a chance against the celebrated Up in the Air. We'll see, but I don't hope much.
Who stole the show in the first half? Alfred Molina. Sometimes he could seem to be overacting, but fortunately he found the perfect balance. Unfortunately he does not have very much to do in the second half, except for a very moving scene. I think his nomination is in danger, but I really want him to get it, because his acting was so much fun, and I think he was just as good as Christoph Waltz who keeps sweeping all the awards.
Peter Sarsgaard is good, he's not very memorable, he's just good.
However, there are some great supporting turns: Rosamund Pike gives an excellent and sexy performance as Helen one of the 'branch' of David. Sally Hawkins who should have been nominated for an Oscar last year is also excellent and moving in her 2 minutes or so. Olivia Williams also stands out as the consciencious teacher of Jenny.
There was one disappointment for me however and I did not think that once I would write this down: Emma Thompson gives quite a weak performance as the Headmistress. She's not given much to do, but she doesn't even try.
And now we have got to the main thing about this movie and the most important reason of this review: Carey Mulligan. She gives an excellent, great performance, which is real breakthrough, but in my humble opinion not completely worthy of an Oscar. She has some very powerful scenes in the end. But in some scenes she's overshadowed by Alfred Molina. But I think she's better than Gabby Sidibe, so if I had to choose between them I would pick Mulligan. So I am going to keep rooting for Meryl, but I'm not gonna be surprised or very disappointed if Mulligan wins (maybe a bit). But if this movie came out in 1963 or 1964, she would win hands down. She's great anyhow and if she fails to win this year, she will get it in a couple of years, because she's a great talent.
I guess I'm going to rewatch all the nominees before the ceremony, but unless Sandra Bullock gives a hell of a performance in The Blind Side, I will pick Meryl and not because of my fondness towards her, I just feel she's worthy.
I don't know I feel that this review is quite incomplete, but we have to make to do with it.
My Grade: 8/10
Possible nominations: Best Picture; Best Actress; Best Supporting Actor (Alfred Molina); Best Screenplay (Adapted?); Best Costume Design maybe or Score, hell I'm not good at predicting the technical awards.