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Jane Eyre (2011)

aka Jane Eyre

Directed By: 
Details: 120 mins · English, French · PG-13 (USA)


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Not Bad

As I stated in another review of an adaptation of Jane Eyre, it is my favorite book.

This particular adaptation had absolutely beautiful cinematography an a top notch cast, and I will forgive them for casting beautiful people in the roles of Jane and Mr. Rochester, because it seems that everyone who re-makes this story does so.

Despite the movie's running time in comparison to the length of the book, I was surprised at how well they incorporated most elements from the book. I've seen television adaptations twice as long fail to include relevant portions.

The only thing that kept this from being a 4 or 5 star movie for me was the abrupt ending. The end of the book is what I love most, and I will often pull the book out just to re-read the last hundred or so pages. Without that delightfully teasing and flirtatious ending, this movie is almost not worth watching again. But because the rest of it was done so beautifully, maybe one day I will give it another go.

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As good as the others, but read the book

There is no bad film version of Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre. This is as good as all of the others. Watch it, watch the others, the story itself will never cease to provide a perfect escape to living in the "real" world. My preferred version has Orson Welles in the role of Mr. Rochester. It's the sound of his voice that forever rings in my ears whenever I read the book, indeed when I watch a version without him.

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Small Jane Eyre
Small St. John Rivers
Small Edward Rochester
Small Mrs. Fairfax
Small Diana Rivers
Small John Reed
Small Lady Ingram
Small Mr. Brocklehurst
No_movie_poster Eliza Reed
Small Blanche Ingram
Small Mary Rivers
Small Mrs. Reed
Small Richard Mason


No_movie_poster Cary Fukunaga Director
Small Charlotte Brontë Novel
No_movie_poster Moira Buffini Screenplay
No_movie_poster Alison Owen Production
No_movie_poster Paul Trijbits Production
Small Charlotte Brontë Story Contributor
No_movie_poster Melanie Oliver Editing


The film begins with Jane Eyre running away from Thornfield Hall in the middle of the night and finding herself alone on the moors, in the pouring rain. She manages to reach the doorstep of Moor House, the home of Mr. St. John Rivers, a clergyman, and his two sisters. They take Jane in, saving her life.

There follows a flashback, to the ten-year-old Jane Eyre, an orphan, living with her maternal uncle's family, the Reeds, at Gateshead. Jane’s aunt, Sarah Reed, doesn't like Jane and is very cruel to her; Mrs. Reed's three children are also abusive towards her. One day, Jane is locked in the Red Room, where her uncle died, and which Jane believes is haunted. She knocks herself unconscious on the door, after a huge puff of smoke comes down the chimney. Jane's aunt sends her to Lowood School for Girls, which is run by a cruel clergyman, Mr. Brocklehurst. Mrs Reed tells him that Jane is a deceitful child and is not to be trusted. Jane tells her aunt how much she hates her and that she is a hard-hearted woman.

Jane arrives at Lowood. While another pupil, Helen Burns, is being beaten, Jane accidentally drops her tray. Mr. Brocklehurst brands her a liar and makes her stand on a chair all day. Jane and Helen become close friends, but Helen later dies of typhus.

Eight years later, Jane leaves Lowood and takes up a post with Alice Fairfax of Thornfield Hall. She will be a governess to Adele Varens, a young French orphan girl. When she first arrives at Thornfield, a gloomy, isolated mansion, Jane mistakes Mrs. Fairfax for her employer, but she finds out that she is only the housekeeper for her absent master. While Jane is walking into town to post a letter, a horse passes her and throws its rider. Jane helps the gentleman to his horse. Later, back at the mansion, she learns that the horse rider is Edward Rochester, master of the house. He jokingly tells her that she must have bewitched his horse to make him fall. They gradually fall in love with one another.

One night, Jane is awoken by a strange noise at her door, only to find that Mr. Rochester's room is on fire, which the two of them manage to extinguish. He thanks her for saving his life and holds her hand affectionately. The next day, Rochester leaves Thornfield to visit Lady Blanche Ingram, his future wife; he brings her back to Thornfield with him a few weeks later. When a man named Richard Mason of Spanish Town, Jamaica, shows up, Jane can see that Rochester is disturbed. That night, a scream awakens everyone. Rochester assures his guests it is just a servant's reaction to a nightmare, but after they go back to their rooms, he secretly has Jane tend to a bleeding Mason while he fetches a doctor. Rochester has the doctor take Mason away.

Jane receives a letter from her old nurse, Bessie. Jane's cousin, John Reed, has committed suicide, the news of which has so shocked his mother, Sarah Reed, that it has brought on a stroke. Apparently, Mrs. Reed has been asking to see Jane. Jane returns to Gateshead, where her dying aunt shows her a letter from Jane's paternal uncle, John Eyre, asking for her to go to live with him in Madeira. He wants to adopt Jane and bequeath her at his death. Jane notices that the letter was dated three years ago. Mrs. Reed admits to telling her uncle that Jane had died of typhus at Lowood School. She tells Jane that she (Mrs. Reed) has been cursed by her. Jane forgives her aunt and returns to Thornfield, having begun a correspondence with John Eyre.

Jane informs Rochester that she must leave Thornfield due to his impending marriage to Blanche Ingram. However, Rochester suddenly proclaims his love for Jane and proposes to her; they kiss passionately. However, during the wedding ceremony, Mr. Mason appears, along with a lawyer, declaring that Mr. Rochester cannot marry Jane, because he is still married to Mr. Mason's sister, Bertha; he adds that his sister is still living at Thornfield Hall. Mr. Rochester admits this is true and takes Jane to meet his wife, calling her his own demon; they find her locked away in a room at Thornfield. Rochester tells Jane that his father wanted him to marry Bertha for her money. Once they were married, he discovered that she was rapidly descending into madness and was forced to lock her away in Thornfield; she was the one responsible for the strange happenings in the house. Refusing to go against her principles, and despite her love for Rochester, Jane leaves Thornfield in the middle of the night.

After Jane regains her health, St. John finds her a teaching position at a nearby charity school. One night, St. John appears, informing her that her uncle, John Eyre, has died, leaving her all his property and that she is rich, to the tune of 20,000 pounds. Jane offers to share the money with St. John and his sisters, suggesting that they live together at Moor house; they agree to the offer. St. John asks Jane to marry him and go with him to India. Jane agrees to go to India with him, but rejects the marriage proposal, suggesting that they travel as brother and sister, as that's how she sees their relationship. On the moor, Jane suddenly hears Rochester's voice calling her name.

Jane returns to Thornfield, only to find the house a blackened ruin. She learns from Mrs. Fairfax that Rochester's wife set the house on fire and died, jumping from the roof. Jane finds Rochester, but in the rescue attempt he has lost his eyesight. Jane reunites with him and they embrace.

Release Dates:

Theatrical : 2011-03-09 : New York City

Theatrical : 2011-03-18 : Estonia

Theatrical : 2011-03-18 : Latvia

Theatrical : 2011-03-25 : Canada

Theatrical : 2011-03-26 : Taiwan

Theatrical : 2011-04-21 : Portugal

Theatrical : 2011-05-06 : South Africa

Theatrical : 2011-04-21 : South Korea

Theatrical : 2011-05-06 : Iceland

Theatrical : 2011-05-19 : Singapore

Theatrical : 2011-09-01 : Hong Kong

Theatrical : 2011-09-01 : Russia

Theatrical : 2011-07-28 : Czech Republic

Theatrical : 2011-06-23 : Kuwait

Theatrical : 2011-08-26 : Lithuania

Theatrical : 2011-06-23 : Israel

Theatrical : 2011-09-01 : Kazakhstan

Theatrical : 2011-09-09 : United Kingdom

Theatrical : 2011-09-09 : Ireland

Theatrical : 2011-06-24 : Norway

Theatrical : 2011-10-13 : Hungary

Theatrical : 2011-10-07 : India

Theatrical : 2011-10-07 : Italy

Theatrical : 2012-01-11 : Belgium

Theatrical : 2011-09-22 : Netherlands

Theatrical : 2012-07-25 : France

Theatrical : 2011-12-09 : Turkey

Theatrical : 2011-10-14 : Poland

Theatrical : 2011-09-19 : Armenia

Theatrical : 2011-11-10 : Greece

Theatrical : 2011-11-10 : Denmark

Theatrical : 2011-12-01 : Germany

Theatrical : 2012-06-02 : Japan

Theatrical : 2011-12-02 : Spain

Theatrical : 2011-03-11 : United States of America

DVD : 2012-03-15 : Brazil

DVD : 2012-06-05 : Argentina

DVD : 2011-08-16

2011-07-01 : Czech Republic

2011-10-19 : Belgium

2011-10-08 : Spain

2012-06-13 : France

2012-07-10 : France

2011-10-31 : Greece

2011-10-03 : Germany