Small Axe: Education - Rotten Tomatoes

Small Axe: Education (2020)

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Critic Consensus: Education casts its hopeful gaze on the future, offering a simple and effective end to the Small Axe series that solidifies Steve McQueen place as a master storyteller.

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Education is the coming of age story of 12-year-old Kingsley (Kenyah Sandy), who has a fascination for astronauts and rockets. When Kingsley is pulled to the headmaster's office for being disruptive in class, he discovers he's being sent to a school for those with "special needs." Distracted by working two jobs, his parents (Sharlene Whyte, Daniel Francis-Swaby) are unaware of the unofficial segregation policy at play, preventing many Black children from receiving the education they deserve, until a group of West Indian women take matters into their own hands. Tamara Lawrance (The Long Song) also stars with Naomi Ackie (Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker). Education was co-written by Alastair Siddons and Steve McQueen.

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Critic Reviews for Small Axe: Education

All Critics (46) | Top Critics (21)

Like the rest of the Small Axe films, Education takes place in the past but feels exceptionally timely today.

December 18, 2020 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Expect to fall hopelessly in love with 12-year-old Kingsley (Kenyah Sandy - a major discovery), the inquisitive, bespectacled protagonist in Steve McQueen's final, touching entry in his five-part Amazon Prime "Small Axe" film series.

December 17, 2020 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

McQueen and cinematographer Shabier Kirschner mostly play it straight, with the same sturdy period details found in other installments. As a whole, "Education" is McQueen at his most mannered.

December 11, 2020 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…
Top Critic

The empathy and innate understanding of this character feels right up there with Truffaut's Small Change among the screen's most touchingly immediate portrayals of youth.

December 6, 2020 | Full Review…

Harrowing and heartbreaking. Raw and difficult and true. The 'Small Axe' cycle is the most exhilarating film project of 2020.

September 13, 2021 | Full Review…

A heartfelt, deeply personal coming-of-age story chronicling the turning point in McQueen's journey to genius.

April 22, 2021 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

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