Sunday, February 28, 2010

Truly Worthy Oscar-Nominee

I must say I am not a huge fan of Oscar nominated movies because I feel that they are usually too serious and boring. I have watched only a handful of Oscar nominated films in the past including Crash, Slum Dog Millionaire, and The Departed. However, I have actually watched five of the 2010 Oscar-nominated movies in the Best Picture category. Well, technically only four and half - Inglorious Basterds was so bad that I had shut it down half way through. The others that I fully watched include Avatar, Up, Up in the Air, and recently An Education.

An Education is a story of a British high school girl, who meets an older man. Awed by how "fun" this man makes her life, she is ultimately faced with the choice of being with him or continuing her education. So what choice will she make? Watch and find out.

I really enjoyed this movie because it was very entertaining. It had an interesting story and not only made me laugh but also made me think. This movie portrays very well that in our male dominated society, the role of women is only to get married and take care of the household. Yes, this may not be true of all cultures but it is still true of some. Even though parents in such cultures now allow their daughters to attend college but that is only so that a nice man will choose them to be their wife. So even though these girls are intelligent and hard working, ultimately they are expected to become housewives. The film raises an important question: what's an education for, for such girls? Only so they could ultimately become housewives? And if they don't get married, are they not good enough for society? The film also shows that parents can sometimes be too trusting and naive to really understand that they are being fooled by their kids and hence, do not carefully monitor who their kids are hanging out with.

The movie also gives the message that the education system should be changed to make studies more interesting for students and teach them why they are being taught what they are being taught. The schools should teach the students how the information they learn in school will be useful in real life. The main message of the film was that sometimes important life lessons are learnt not in school but through your life experiences.

I think Carey Mulligan did an excellent job portraying the intelligent high school girl, Jenny, who is tired of her boring studious life. Carey reminded me of Katie Holmes, especially when she had her hair up in the movie. She has the same innocence, same smile as Katie Holmes portrayed in the TV series, Dawson's Creek. Alfred Molina was funny and remarkable as Jenny's trusting and naive father, who really wants Jenny to attend the Oxford University until she meets a man who can take care of her. Peter Sarsgaard was quite convincing as the older man, David, who is not only able to influence Jenny but also her naive parents through his charming personality. Kudos to Lone Scherfig for directing such an excellent movie and to Nick Hornby for writing such a remarkable screenplay.

I highly recommend this movie especially for all women and for parents, who have daughters. This film definitely deserved to be nominated for the Oscars, especially Carey Mulligan in the Best Actress category for her outstanding performance. I wish Alfred Molina had been nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category.

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