EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|JANE EYRE (director: Moira Buffini/based on the novel by ; cinematographer: Adriano Goldman; editor: Melanie Ann Oliver; music: Dario Marianelli; cast: (Jane Eyre), Michael Fassbender (Edward Rochester), Jamie Bell (St. John Rivers), Amelia Clarkson (Young Jane), (Mrs. Reed), Freya Parks (Helen Burns), Holliday Grainger (Diana Rivers), Tamzin Merchant (Mary Rivers), Imogen Poots (Blanche Ingram), Valentina Cervi (Bertha Mason), (Mrs. Fairfax), Simon McBurney (Mr. Brocklehurst); Runtime: 121; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producers: Alison OwenPaul Trijbits; Focus Features; 2011); screenwriters:|
|"Respectful to the
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
capably directs this unemotional, contemplative, costume drama
adaptation of the classic 1847
British book by . It's written by Moira Buffini, who keeps things respectful
to the novel though it's an abridgment. There are at least 10 other
feature film versions of Jane Eyre, with this gothic teen romancer
probably rated in the middle of the pack. It's a sexual coming-of-age
filled with psychological
tragic love, and British mores. What it's not, is exciting or
middle-brow or made as a trendy update.
The pic begins with the
10-year-old Jane Eyre (Amelia
Clarkson) an orphan living with
her detestable guardian aunt Mrs.
Reed (Sally Hawkins), a
spiteful woman who deems her a worthless
liar and sends her to a
Christian charity school that uses corporal
punishment. Jane makes one classmate friend in the rigid dogmatic Loman school, Helen (Freya Parks), but her gritty friend
dies of consumption. If there's any consolation in attending such a
harsh school, it is that Jane got an exhaustive education.
Jane (Mia Wasikowska, 21-year-old Aussie
actress) as a teenager
wanders the moors, escaping from Thornfield
Hall estate, and in a state of
collapse, is rescued in front of the house of the kind pastor St. John
Rivers (Jamie Bell). He takes
her in and when she recovers, he finds her employment as a governess at the Thornfield
Hall estate to a French speaking child named Adele (Romy Settbon
A bit stunned to be dwelling
in such luxury at the Thornfield
owned by the sophisticated Edward Rochester (Michael Fassbender), the
curious but innocent Jane is taken under the wing of Mrs. Fairfax (Judi
Dench), the friendly but chatty head housekeeper with loads of bad
advice, and enjoys her duty of tutoring the French child.
Rochester is a blunt and cynical speaking man, who ignores social conventions and speaks to Jane not as a nobleman to a commoner but someone who is interested in her as an equal. Even though they fall in love, Rochester has a dark secret. When the secret is known, a frightened Jane runs away from the mansion across the moors.
Jane again takes sanctuary with the pious Christian
missionary St. John Rivers (Jamie Bell) and his two sisters (Holliday
Grainger and Tamzin Merchant). But this time St. John Rivers reveals his creepy side and
asks that they wed, even when she tells him that she doesn't love him
and just wants a friend. With that, after some time away, Jane returns
to Rochester and offers him her tenderness after she learns he's now
the person in need of help.
REVIEWED ON 5/2/2011 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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