Monday, March 1, 2010

AN Education A TRULY FABULOUS movie

Well the final countdown is on. Only a few more days until my favorite show (along with the Tony's): the Academy Awards.

The Bug and I went to see An Education yesterday. Absolutely perfect film and completely original and unique, as are most of the nominated Best Films of the year. From my perspective, based upon the films up for Best Picture, this has been a great year for the industry (I do NOT concur with this conclusion when I visit a video rental store).

This film is magical and its lead actress, Carey Mulligan, gives a performance that is incandescent and on the level of Holly Golllightly by Audrey Hepburn. The comparison with this screen goddess are numerous. But unlike the flighty (in one of my favorite films of all times, Breakfast At Tiffany's see previous blog post). Holly, Jenny, although a bit naive is quite grounded. This almost 17-year old is more mature than all of the other adults that surround her.

The movie is a coming of age film of a young, beautiful and precocious girl, Jenny, growing up in the 60s London who falls in love with a playboy almost twice her age. The young girl, who is attending a prep school in preparation for Oxford, enters a sophisticated world that is at first enchanting and that is completely enchanted by Jenny.

This film benefits from a brilliant script by Nick Hornsby (based upon a memoir by Lynn Barber). The bon mots are numerous and I laughed and cried my way through this movie, much as I did with Up In the Air and The Blind Side.

This film, also benefits from a tour de force ensemble cast: Emma Thompson, Peter Sarsgaard, Alfred Molina, and the delicious eye candy Dominc Cooper. Rosamund Pike gives a brilliant performance as Helen, a not so dumb, dumb blonde.

The thing that I relish about this film is that our heroine, Jenny, is smart, extremely sophisticated (precociously), funny, fun-loving, principled teenager who navigates her way through a despicable, albeit appealing cast of characters.

So, the real question is: Who shall be the Best Actress winner? Carey certainly deserves it. But my money and opinion is still on Sandra Bullock. That performance was career defining especially after a very lengthy run. Ms. Mulligan I hope has a similar long career ahead as well with more Oscar possibilities. This actress is truly unique. She has a similar quiet intelligence, beauty and humor truly evocative of Audrey Hepburn. It might have been the script and great casting but somehow I think this was a unique alchemy of a good script, a good casting agent and an actress who had the awareness and that certain je ne cest quoi, to bring magic to an already magical movie (even the scene above is evocative of Breakfast At Tiffany's when Holly came to visit George Peppard through the window of his bedroom).

And the Soundtrack is amazing. Thanks to my friend Staci Pope in the beautiful city of Austin for sending me the soundtrack.

Bug and I also rented and watched Coco Before Chanel. It was my second time to see (see previous post) but it was equally as compelling. A brilliant performance by Audrey Tautou.

I hope to see these films before Sunday: The Last Station, Precious, A Single Man.

What did you think of An Education?

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