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An Education (2009)

PG-13  |   |  Drama  |  5 February 2010 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 106,640 users   Metascore: 85/100
Reviews: 234 user | 277 critic | 34 from

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.



(memoir), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 41 wins & 78 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
William Melling ...
Small Boy #1
Small Boy #2
Nick Sampson ...
Kate Duchêne ...
Latin Teacher (as Kate Duchene)
Bel Parker ...
Small Girl


In the early 1960's, sixteen year old Jenny Mellor lives with her parents in the London suburb of Twickenham. On her father's wishes, everything that Jenny does is in the sole pursuit of being accepted into Oxford, as he wants her to have a better life than he. Jenny is bright, pretty, hard working but also naturally gifted. The only problems her father may perceive in her life is her issue with learning Latin, and her dating a boy named Graham, who is nice but socially awkward. Jenny's life changes after she meets David Goldman, a man over twice her age. David goes out of his way to show Jenny and her family that his interest in her is not improper and that he wants solely to expose her to cultural activities which she enjoys. Jenny quickly gets accustomed to the life to which David and his constant companions, Danny and Helen, have shown her, and Jenny and David's relationship does move into becoming a romantic one. However, Jenny slowly learns more about David, and by association ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Innocence of the Young.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving sexual content, and for smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:







Release Date:

5 February 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Enseñanza de vida  »

Box Office


£4,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$159,017 (USA) (9 October 2009)


$12,574,715 (USA) (30 April 2010)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Carey Mulligan mentioned in an interview at the Sundance Film Festival that some of the most enjoyable moments of filming were when there were actors who only came in for a day or so, like Sally Hawkins and Emma Thompson, and she particularly enjoyed the four scenes she shot with the latter, whom she described as being "amazing", and called her acting "brilliant". See more »


When Jenny is in her room crying after finding out about David, her father is talking to her behind her room's closed door and says "there's a cup of tea & some Biscuits out here" but if you look closely into the cup it's not tea it's most probably coffee or Chocolate Milk. See more »


[first lines]
Miss Stubbs: Come on, girls. Anybody?
Miss Stubbs: Anybody else?
Miss Stubbs: Jenny again.
Jenny: Isn't it because Mr. Rochester's blind?
Miss Stubbs: Yes, Jenny.
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Symphony No. 3
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User Reviews

Perfect pitch
10 October 2009 | by (Beverly Hills, CA) – See all my reviews

This beautifully observed film is anchored by a series of performances acted with perfect pitch by its stars and supporting cast, led by the remarkable Carey Mulligan, and a truly extraordinary script by Nick Hornby. The coming of age plot is, perhaps, a little formulaic but that really takes second place to a series of wonderfully engaging characters who surround Ms. Mulligan's 16/17 year-old Jenny as she falls a little to hard for the appealing (and older) rogue played by Peter Sarsgaard.

One annoying little piece of trivium. The University of Oxford does not now and did not in 1962 admit undergraduates. Undergraduates are admitted by individual colleges at the university. So the letter that Jenny receives in which we learn whether she was accepted for a place would have come from a college and not the university as a whole.

And one amusing detail: Rosamund Pike who plays Dominic Cooper's decidedly non-academic blonde girlfriend actually attended Wadham College, Oxford! Takes an Oxford alum to play a dumb blonde, I suppose.

74 of 129 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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