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post #1 of 10 Old 03-22-2010, 11:57 AM - Thread Starter
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attachment.php?attachmentid=170890&d=1269262238
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373647

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

84






Studio and Year: Sony Classic Pictures - 2009
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 100 minutes
Genre: Drama

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French
Starring: Peter Sarsgaard, Carey Mulligan, Alfred Molina, Rosamund Pike, Dominic Cooper, Olivia Williams, Emma Thompson
Directed by: Lone Scherfig
Music by: Paul Englishby
Written by: Nick Hornby
Region Code: A,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: March 30, 2010







"A girl beyond her years, meets a man beyond his boundaries"



Film Synopsis:

Jenny (Carey Mulligan), a bright young school girl who longs for adulthood, meets David (Peter Sarsgaard), a dashing older man, he introduces her to his vibrant world of glamorous friends, chic jazz clubs and her own sexual awakening. Will she let this affair ruin her dreams of attending Oxford? This captivating film sparkles with the wit, charm and style of 1960s Britain.



My Take:

An education is a coming of age film that takes place in London in the early 1960’s. 16 year old Jenny is an excellent student and is on track to achieve her goal of studying at Oxford. She is an only child and her parents have definitive ideas about her direction in life. Her father can be insufferable but he loves his daughter. He follows Jenny’s academics closely and pushes her to excel. Jenny’s mother wants what’s best for her and silently follows her father’s lead. Jenny is strong willed and bright. She finds her life to be boring and loves to escape by listening to French jazz and dreaming of one day going to Paris. On a chilly rainy evening a charming older man, David (Sarsgaard), approaches Jenny on the street and offers her and her cello a ride home. After a bit or reluctance and playful banter she accepts. Jenny is immediately smitten by David. The next day David leaves her a bouquet of flowers, wishing her luck, before her school concert that evening. Her parents question her about who this mystery man is but she expertly puts them off. Jenny boasts about David to her friends and bumps into him in town the following day. He then asks her to accompany him to a classical music performance followed by dinner. She wants to go but informs him that her parents won’t allow it. David insists that he will speak to them and that afterward they will let her go. She mentions it and father of course won’t hear of it. David arrives and after only a few minutes not only has permission to take Jenny but coaxes his way into brining her home after her father’s imposed curfew. David and Jenny meet Danny and Helen, friends of David’s, and the four of them attend the concert and later go to a jazz club. Jenny finds their company and free lifestyle invigorating. David encourages her to live life to the fullest and mentions an upcoming trip that he Danny and Helen are planning to Paris. He invites her to go along and helps concoct a story to convince her parents to allow her to go. Jenny becomes enthralled with the idea and the word about it and her relationship with David spreads around school. Her teacher discourages the idea and encourages Jenny to remain focused on her studies and Oxford. Jenny begins to see a life filled with learning from books to pale in comparison to the experiences that can be gained by living it now. This clouds her perspective and she loses interest in school. This is exacerbated by the attention she receives from David and the one sided view she has of the world outside of her limited experience. Ultimately she comes to learn that life and people aren’t always what they seem and that perhaps the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.

I thought this was an decent dramatic film about the loss of innocence and a young girl’s first experience with romance, regret and bitter disappointment. I must confess that I didn’t like it as much as I expected. 1960’s or not I found the lack or parenting by Jenny’s mother and father to be less than realistic. As a parent with teenagers there would be no way my daughter or son would be allowed to associate with, let alone date, someone that was David’s age. It seemed like the educators at Jenny’s school had more of an interest in her future than her folks.

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
I did get a kick out of the fact that her father (played by Alfred Molina) was gung ho about her education until he thought she was getting married and then he was fine with that since it wasn’t going to cost him anything and she now had a future.
I appreciated the depth of the main characters, how they were portrayed by the very capable cast and the seamless direction by Lone Scherfig. That is where the strength of this film lies as I felt that the story while tangible in context didn’t seem appreciably genuine in execution. Regardless there is plenty of substance here and in the end I found An education to be an enjoyable film that should appeal to genre fans.

Parental Guide:

The rating is for mature thematic material involving sexual content and smoking.






AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 80



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373699

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699



Video: 88


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373699

An education comes to Blu-ray Disc from Sony featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 27 mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio that has an average bitrate of 3.8 mbps.

Colors are effectively used in this film to help set the tone/setting based upon the mood of the scene and characters within it. The chroma range isn’t diverse but hues can vary from being sullen and inanimate to warm and inviting. Skin tones are appropriately bland with natural highlights and descriptive variation. Images onscreen were exquisitely detailed and sharp with superb depth of field and visible texture during wide angle shots. Contrast was strong and blacks were deep with revealing delineation that provided excellent perceptibility during scenes shot at night or in lower lighting. The video had a clean, pristine quality that enhanced dimensionality and provided a looking through a window effect. The lossless audio soundtrack capably delivered the elements within the recording and sounding fine. High level detail provided plenty of depth and audible texture to voices. Subtle background sounds within the soundfield were clearly audible. Being a film driven predominantly by dialogue didn’t afford this mix a lot of opportunities for active surround sound. Its use was primarily to create ambient environmental sounds and provide more envelopment for the music score. The subwoofer added sporadic low frequency effects which lent weight to the music featured in the film.



Bonus Features:


  • Commentary with director Lone Scherfig & actors Carey Mulligan and Peter Sarsgaard

  • The making of An education – 9 minute featurette

  • (HD) Walking the red carpet – 8 minute feature

  • 11 deleted scenes

  • (HD) Theatrical trailer

  • BD-Live enabled
attachment.php?attachmentid=170891&d=1269262238



Final Thoughts:

An education is an enjoyable coming of age style drama that revolves around a teenage girl that feels her life offers little reward until she meets a charming and beguiling older man that shows her a more mature and exciting world outside of her own. For this she is willing to sacrifice her education and the opportunity to study at Oxford. Ultimately she comes to learn that life and people aren’t always what they seem and that perhaps the grass isn’t always greener on the other side. Nominated for an Academy Award (plus a Best Actress nomination for Carey Mulligan) this is a well acted and directed film that didn’t resonate as deeply as I had hoped but was enjoyable nonetheless. Sony is decidedly consistent in the excellent audio/video quality of their offerings on Blu-ray Disc and this presentation is no different as it features crisp high definition video and crystal clear lossless sound. The supplied bonus material includes a decent commentary track and behind the scenes making of feature that are worth checking out. If you’re a fan this is worth collecting otherwise it makes for a good rental on movie night.









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews





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post #2 of 10 Old 03-22-2010, 04:43 PM
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Thanks for the review Ralph,

I have to see this one soon as the wife wants to see it badly.

Lee

 


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post #3 of 10 Old 03-22-2010, 04:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Weber View Post

Thanks for the review Ralph,

I have to see this one soon as the wife wants to see it badly.

Greetings,


No problem Lee. I can forward it to you..


Regards,

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post #4 of 10 Old 03-23-2010, 06:32 AM
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This is definitely a Collect!

Great review Ralph!

Cheers
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post #5 of 10 Old 03-24-2010, 05:08 PM
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I thought this was a fantastic movie! And more deserving of Best Picture than The Hurt Locker for that matter.
You see, I want to rewatch this one.....I don't think I'll ever rewatch HL (even though I loved it....all the tension will be gone)
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post #6 of 10 Old 03-31-2010, 12:05 PM
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Watched this last night right after "Sherlock Holmes" and must say I found this to be the better film.
It was an engaging movie with an excellent performance by Carey Mulligan and the supporting cast.
Thanks Ralph for the review.


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post #7 of 10 Old 04-12-2010, 09:34 AM
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It's a bummer that you didn't like this one as much as you had hoped Ralph. I didn't know what to expect, but had good hopes for this one. It met my expectations, and kept my wife and I engaged the whole time. She's a pretty good indicator of a quality film. If she's asleep before 1 hour, then it's not so good. If she makes it past the 1 hour mark, it's a good film. (we tend to break up our movies between two evening viewings). She could have gone much past 1 hour on this one.

Stuggling between a 3.5 and 4 rating for this film. I agree with your review, but might up the rating to a 4. I thought the acting performance by Peter Sarsgaard to be entirely believable and exceptional. Carey Mulligan was also cast very well, and did a great job for her part. These two really made this movie, and held it together the whole time.

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Yeah, the parenting in this film was definately naive. No way when my kids get to the teenage years would they be allowed to do what Jenny did with a man so much older. They were pushed over way to easy. Even if David was persuasive, a trip to Paris? All alone with him? I don't think so, but it did make the film more interesting and added to the drama. I'm not sure if her dad was o.k. with marrying her off to save money, or if he thought her life would be upped a level due to marrying someone like David. I tended to think of the latter when I watched it, but you have a good point. Hmm


As far as PQ, I would say it was average maybe 4 out of 5, and the SQ didn't have much dynamics to it, but the dialogue was generally clear.

Thanks for your time writing this review Ralph.

PQ 4 out of 5, SQ 3.5 out of 5, Film 4 out of 5.

Dan
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post #8 of 10 Old 04-12-2010, 10:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stereomandan View Post

It's a bummer that you didn't like this one as much as you had hoped Ralph. I didn't know what to expect, but had good hopes for this one. It met my expectations, and kept my wife and I engaged the whole time. She's a pretty good indicator of a quality film. If she's asleep before 1 hour, then it's not so good. If she makes it past the 1 hour mark, it's a good film. (we tend to break up our movies between two evening viewings). She could have gone much past 1 hour on this one.

Stuggling between a 3.5 and 4 rating for this film. I agree with your review, but might up the rating to a 4. I thought the acting performance by Peter Sarsgaard to be entirely believable and exceptional. Carey Mulligan was also cast very well, and did a great job for her part. These two really made this movie, and held it together the whole time.

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Yeah, the parenting in this film was definately naive. No way when my kids get to the teenage years would they be allowed to do what Jenny did with a man so much older. They were pushed over way to easy. Even if David was persuasive, a trip to Paris? All alone with him? I don't think so, but it did make the film more interesting and added to the drama. I'm not sure if her dad was o.k. with marrying her off to save money, or if he thought her life would be upped a level due to marrying someone like David. I tended to think of the latter when I watched it, but you have a good point. Hmm


As far as PQ, I would say it was average maybe 4 out of 5, and the SQ didn't have much dynamics to it, but the dialogue was generally clear.

Thanks for your time writing this review Ralph.

PQ 4 out of 5, SQ 3.5 out of 5, Film 4 out of 5.

Dan

Greetings,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts Dan. I always enjoy reading your perspective.

Regards,

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post #9 of 10 Old 04-14-2010, 08:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Greetings,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts Dan. I always enjoy reading your perspective.

Regards,

Thanks, and ditto Ralph.

Regards,
Dan
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post #10 of 10 Old 04-18-2010, 11:11 PM
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I am just about to buy this. And I believe this is based on a real girl, that wrote a book of this time.
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