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Jane Eyre 2011 Film Review

I am a film enthusiast and enjoy reviewing films I have watched. I like all sorts of films but mainly black & white ones from the 50's & 60s


Mia Wasikowska

Jane Eyre

Michael Fassbender

Edward Rochester

Judy Dench

Mrs Fairfax

Simon McBurney

Mr Brocklehurst

Holliday Granger

Diana Rivers

Sally Hawkins

Mrs Reed

About the film

Director: Cary Joji Fukunaka

Producer: Alison Owen, Paul Trijbits

Running time: 120 mins

Genre: Romance, Drama

Budget: $35,000,000

The Film

The book, first published in 1847 and written by Charlotte Brontë, has been adapted into film and play many times over the years. I shall be reviewing the 2011 film version. The film begins with Jane running away from Thornfield Hall in tears across the Yorkshire Moors. The film then sees flashbacks of her life, beginning with her difficult childhood. Orphaned at a young age, she was treated cruelly by her cousin John and Aunt. She was then sent to a strict girls school run by Mr Brocklehurst. Jane eventually grows up and gets a job at Thornfield Hall, run by Edward Rochester. She is given the role of Governess to a young girl called Adele.

One night, Jane finds there is a fire in Mr Rochester's room. They manage to put the fire out, but he tells her not to mention the fire to anyone. They then share a brief, but passionate encounter. Shortly after this he goes away to visit a lady called Blanche Ingram. Mrs Fairfax informs Jane that Blanche is Mr Rochester's perspective wife. The film basically covers the story of Edward Rochester's and Jane's affection for each other and throughout the film we see how complicated things come between them. For instance, there is a scene in the film where he asks Jane to marry him, which she accepts. But on the day of the wedding, a man called Mr Mason comes into the Church informing Jane that he is already married to a lady called Bertha. He doesn't deny this, and tells Jane that he left her when she had gone mad. It turns out that she's been living in Thornfield Hall all the time hidden away on the third floor. He pays someone called Grace to take care of her.

As you watch the film, we see how Edward Rochester and Jane Eyre battle with their desire for each other and how Jane copes with all the dilemma's that are thrown at her from Edward's wife and impending marriage to Blanche. As she struggles with her own affections towards Edward, it's a film that is well worth watching, just to see what happens between them.


My Thoughts

I really should read the book, but I haven't. So I can't compare the film to the book, or even to other adaptations. But I did enjoy this film. I found the story quite Gothic, set in this big stately home. I found that the actors that played Jane and Edward had a good connection and portrayed their characters well.

Although Edward Rochester isn't in the film as much as what Jane Eyre is, he comes as a strong and dark character. He's a likeable man, but also has secrets and, I believe, demons in his life that he keeps well hidden. Only when Jane finds out about these secrets, you can see it hurts her. She had such a difficult childhood growing up, only to be treated like this by Edward, although not intentionally. I sincerely believe he did had feelings towards her, only I don't think he knew how to deal with other aspects of his life, like Blanche and Bertha. And I think with the difficult life that Jane has had, I really think she found someone she emotionally connected with. Although Mr Rochester seems quite a bit older than young Jane in this version, I think the connection between them is real. Dame Judy Dench, who plays Mrs Fairfax, plays an excellent part, as you would expect.

With flashbacks throughout the film to Jane's early life, we get a real sense of how difficult her life has been. I think this helps to understand her better and why she feels the need to love, and be loved.

Although the film has quite a dark and Gothic edge to it, I think it is a beautifully crafted and well made film. I ended up feeling quite sorry for both of them really, for different reasons. I felt sorry for Jane for what she has gone through in her life. All she want is to feel safe and secure somewhere, and comfortable. Edward Rochester, I believe, can do this for her. And I feel sorry for Edward because I really do think he has true feelings for Jane, but didn't know how to deal with other aspects of his life and how to tell her.

If you're into these types of films, then I would highly recommend this film. I really enjoyed it and it's a 10/10 from me.

Jane Eyre Official Film Trailer

© 2020 Louise Powles

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Dale Anderson from The High Seas on September 25, 2020:

In all these years of my long life I have seen parts of this movie many times but never the whole thing. Your review was well written and I can't wait to read some of your other hub articles.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on September 15, 2020:

The film seems very watchable from your review. Thanks for sharing.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on September 15, 2020:

Thanks for the review. You also remind me to read the book. These oldies are still the best for those of us who value profound thoughts interwoven with great literary skills.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on September 12, 2020:

I have enjoyed reading the book several times. The story is interesting. I think I would like the film that you've reviewed very much.

Ankita B on September 12, 2020:

I have read the book many years ago and also have watched the movie recently. I enjoyed reading your review of the film and I definitely share the same reviews as well. It was a nice read.

Arun28 on September 12, 2020:

Thanks for your review. I'll soon check out the movie.

You may wanna read my review on one of my fav movies.

Lorna Lamon on September 12, 2020:

I fell in love with this book at school and have watched an earlier film adaptation. Your review has encouraged me to watch this version Louise and I'm sure it will be enjoyable. Thank you for sharing.

JC Scull on September 11, 2020:

There used to be a made for TV version of Jane Eyre filmed sometimes in the 1970s. It made it to China and dubbed into Chinese although not sanctioned by the government of Mao Zedong. The copy of this film sort of became a cult classic and a lot of Chinese women identified with it.

When I lived in Beijing I used to go to a bar where on Thursday nights they would show Western movies; some with sub-titles and some dubbed into Chinese. One of those Thursdays I got to watch that version of the film.

Embarrassingly, I have to admit to have never read the novel.

In any case, just sharing.

Ann Carr from SW England on September 11, 2020:

This is one of my favourite books and is definitely worth reading. I studied it at school and I've seen the earlier film but not this one. The story is a powerful one and the characters are strong and credible. Jane and Rochester are two troubled souls who recognise the passion in each other and are finally rewarded for their trials and tribulations.

The story makes a good film so I have no doubt this version is good too. I'll keep an eye out for it! Thanks for the review, Louise.


Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on September 11, 2020:

Louise, I think I would enjoy the movie. I read the book so many years ago I don't remember many details. Thank you for this excellent review of the movie.

FlourishAnyway from USA on September 11, 2020:

I read the book several times in school but have never seen the movie. I’m going to recommend the movie to my daughter based on your review. Thank you!

Liz Westwood from UK on September 11, 2020:

I have done the reverse. I read and studied the book many years ago, but have not seen the film. We were in Haworth in July, but the museum at the parsonage was shut.

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