90

Variety

Aided greatly by an expert film adaptation by its playwright, Willy Russell, Gilbert has come up with an irresistible story about a lively, lower-class British woman hungering for an education and the rather, staid, degenerating English professor who reluctantly provides her with one.
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80

Empire

Lewis Gilbert, and two career best performances from his leading actors, give this film such energy it leaves the pleasant aroma of life and possibility.
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75

TV Guide

This is a poignant if predictable take on the English class system, buoyed by an effervescent performance from Walters.
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63

Christian Science Monitor

By David Sterritt
The plot is ''Pygmalion'' warmed over, but Michael Caine and Julie Walters give sparkling performances, and director Lewis Gilbert keeps the action humming along.
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63

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Jay Scott
The achievement of Educating Rita is a function of the distinguished performances, the agreeably archetypal situation and the scissor-sharp lines. [23 Sep 1983]
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60

Chicago Reader

By Dave Kehr
The film doesn't transcend its genre, but it's an honorable achievement within it.
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50

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
Educating Rita, which might have been a charming human comedy, disintegrated into a forced march through a formula relationship.
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30

The New York Times

By Janet Maslin
The essentially two-character play has been opened up to the point that it includes a variety of settings and subordinate figures, but it never approaches anything lifelike.
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25

Boston Globe

If you were ever curious how a bad director can destroy the work of two talented actors and a slight, but funny, script, you need look no further than Educating Rita. [28 Oct 1983]
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52 out of 100
Mixed or average reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.