Okay, I generally have no problem whatsoever with the suspension of disbelief for the sake of a film, but this just completely baffled me to the point of distraction. What kind of father lets his daughter spend the weekend with a near stranger who is upwards of fifteen years her senior? I mean, I know it was the sixties and everyone was more laid-back and love, peace, and LSD and everything, but come on. That's just ridiculous. This wasn't the only thing that seemed off to me, either. Carey Mulligan's performance as Jenny, the main character, was quite impressive. However, she's supposed to be sixteen going on seventeen yet she acts more mature than even the most seasoned seventeen-year-old. And not in a "I'm-trying-to-act-older-in-order-to-be-treated-like-the-adult-I-aspire-to-be" way, but in a way that seems more appropriate for a middle-aged housewife. For example, when a piece of *ahem* sensitive information is revealed on the way to a family dinner with her parents and her creepy older suitor, Jenny stoically absorbs this development and handles the situation with far more levelheadedness than I think anyone in her position could possess. I understand that Jenny is supposed to be incredibly intelligent and very mature for her age, but for God's sake, she's still only seventeen.
All in all, 'An Education' really was a very good movie. Maybe I would have enjoyed it more if I enjoyed dramatic coming-of-age stories about English teenagers, but I just couldn't get past the absurdity. Yes, Peter Sarsgaard is lovely and endearing, but would I allow my teenage daughter to spend the weekend with him? Maybe not.