Educating Rita


Educating Rita (1983)



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Movie Info

The story of a difficult social transition. Rita is a hairdresser who feels that there should be more to life than having a baby with her husband. Feeling unready to accept the fate that society has in store for her, she secretly takes birth control pills behind her husband's back to grant her time to complete an Open University course and sit her exams. There she meets her professor Frank, a failed poet who has turned to alcohol. But Frank is injected with a new zest for life when hearing Rita's unconventional ideas. However, as Rita proceeds with her studies, education not only alienates her from her social class, but as Frank worries, starves her of that original charm that caught his attention in the first place.


Critic Reviews for Educating Rita

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (1)

If only I'd been able to believe they were actually reading the books, then everything else would have fallen into place. But I didn't believe it.

Oct 23, 2004 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Time has not been kind to "Educating Rita."

Apr 17, 2017 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Inspired by Pygmalion and other works about mentor-pupil troubled/rewarding interaction, Lewis Gilbert's film is too theatrical, betraying its origins, but it's elevated by sparkling performances from Michael Caine and paricularly newcomer Julie Walters

Nov 6, 2007 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

Michael Caine is perfect.

Aug 24, 2007 | Rating: 4/5

...a thoughtful thematic treatise on cultivation and learning and a charming character study of two lost souls from different worlds finding a common need in one another.

Jan 21, 2006 | Rating: 8/10 | Full Review…

Lewis Gilbert has taken a two-person play from stage to screen and cracked it open

Dec 3, 2005 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Educating Rita


If you are either in college currently or are thinking about going soon, you should see this movie. It's a very thought provoking, realistic, unique movie about education and life. I highly recommend it.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

An insightful storyline of education, a merging of classes, pretentious dreams and a meeting of minds. Educating Rita is a (reasonably) modern day ?My Fair Lady? with character and ambition. Both main roles interesting and played well by Michael Caine and Julie Walters. One of the British 80?s greats.

Lady D'arbanville
Lady D'arbanville

Super Reviewer

Julie and Caine work very well together in this, she makes Rita's journey a terrific ride.

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer


Brilliant and bitersweet British comedy-drama between a boozily burn-out professor, who has given up on life, and his newest student - a free-spirited hairdresser, who is determined to change hers.

Dean McKenna
Dean McKenna

Super Reviewer

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