The Bog of Lost Scholars

January 30, 2007

Jane, Jane, Jane

Filed under: Film and Media — castiron @ 1:40 am

It was sheer luck that I happened to catch the recent version of Jane Eyre on Masterpiece Theatre; we’d happened to have PBS on earlier, and when I saw the announcement, I decided to see if it was any good.

Things I liked:

  • Jane.
  • Rochester.
  • Young Jane. (I thought she looked familiar….)
  • The way the movie showed how utterly creepy Jane and Rochester’s relationship really is.
  • And the way it showed how it’s nonetheless an improvement over Jane’s past life.
  • Bertha Rochester. Very different from how I visualized her madness, but it worked. Perhaps sometime I’ll gird my loins and go read Wide Sargasso Sea.
  • Jane’s return to Thornfield.
  • St. John, and how he’s even more creepy than Rochester.

Things that annoyed me:

  • The condensation of Jane’s early life. Ten chapters in fifteen minutes. Anyone who hadn’t read the book (like my boyfriend) would be going “what the heck’s going on here, and who cares about this Helen person?” Of course they had to trim stuff to fit the book into a four-hour movie, but the beginning was clipped to the point of disjointedness. And Bessie made no sense later in the movie, since she’d barely been on stage earlier.
  • That stuff about twins is not in the book that I recall.
  • Okay, it’s more believable that Rochester would have hired a third party than that he would have dressed in drag and passed unrecognized, but I still wanted to see Rochester in disguise.
  • I was a bit distracted while watching, so I’m not sure whether movie-Jane actually had amnesia or was just faking it, but in either case, oh please.
  • Why the heck was St. John going to Africa rather than India? Is this British PC-ness, or what?

Overall, it had a lot of good moments. I could see myself shelling out $15 for the DVD, but not $25.

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