Jane Eyre Deserves Respect

City Connect has caught up with resident film critic Louis Maurati to give you a sneak preview of Jane Eyre which is released in the UK on Friday 9 September 2011. We have included the official trailer to whet your appetite and look forward to your comments once you have seen the film.

In the meantime, Louis’ comments are as follows:-

The 19th big screen adaptation of Jane Eyre is anything but first rate. The film is an amazing achievement for Director Cary Fukunaga’s, especially considering this is only her second feature film following Sin Nombre, a 2009 drama about illegal Mexican immigrants seeking entry to the U.S.

The two main protagonists have been given small but significant personality makeovers from the critically acclaimed novel: Jane is less pious and Rochester is less verbose. Mia Wasikowska, the Australian actress who recently portrayed Alice in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, takes on her most challenging role as Jane. Mia’s performance as the young heroine both shakes and stirs. The chemistry between Wasikowska and Michael Fassbender, who portrays Jane’s mysterious swain Edward Rochester, is superb. Fassbender’s portrayal of Rochester, a figure who is both menacing and vulnerable, is spot on. Despite the many years between the two costars, the emotional connection shines through the screen.

The film is a darker adaptation than many of the films that come before, being more true to the classic novel. With the help of some gorgeous cinematography by Adriano Goldman, who fills each frame in a canvas of blue, black, grey and brown, the audience is literally visually engulfed by Jane’s inner torture and isolation. The film begins with a young orphan Jane (Amelia Clarkson), first living with her cruel aunt Mrs. Reed (Sally Hawkins) and quickly being sent off to a scornful girls boarding school. Jane’s relocation to Thornfield Hall, where she secures employment as a governess under Mrs. Fairfax’s steady gaze, brings her into the warmer company of Rochester, the estate’s capricious owner. By the time Jane arrives at the Thornfield estate to work as a governess under Mr. Rochester, love of any kind has eluded Jane for so long that she has learned to live without it. Soon enough, however, her growing curiosity about Mr. Rochester and the special bond that manifests between them arise something within her, human connection and affection, that frightens her very being. Jane’s words “I must respect myself” reverberate over and over and it is this very sound belief that sticks with her on her journey and with the audience.

This film is a must see for anyone who appreciates the novel or who loves a melodramatic English love story. Unfortunately, being released so early in the year, it will likely be forgotten at award season. On the up side, it may live on as one the best renditions of Jane Eyre ever made.

Image courtesy of fergieinfife.blogspot.com

Video reproduced from ClevverMovies / YouTube

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About Louis Maurati

Louis Maurati was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. He holds a Bachelor of Engineering Degree from the University of Toronto and has worked for several years in the software development industry. In addition, he has completed an Independent Filmmaking Certification at George Brown College and has made 3 independent short films. His love for film has also transpired into several years of volunteer work at film festivals in Canada and the creation of a personal film review blog. He is most excited to join the City Connect writing team.
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