Movie Reviews

Jane Eyre: A Modern Masterpiece

By inSing.com EditorMovies - 18 May 2011 5:00 PM | Updated 5:39 PM

Jane Eyre: A Modern Masterpiece

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Stars: Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender, Judi Dench

The Buzz: It’s yet-another adaptation of Charlotte Bronte’s novel, done by the director of the award-winning film Sin Nombre and featuring red hot Mia Wasikowska, who played Alice in Tim Burton’s adaptation.

The Story: Jane Eyre (Wasikowska) is a governess who falls for her brooding employer Rochester (Fassbender), and discovers that he's hiding a terrible secret.

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inSing says: Director Cary Fukunaga’s previous film was the riveting Sin Nombre (2009), a naturalistic film about two young Latin American teenagers trying to cross the US border. His latest project, an adaptation of Bronte’s Jane Eyre, is miles and continents away, but Fukunaga has done an amazing job of realising the beloved novel on screen. It’s a full-hearted adaptation, with excellent performances, particularly by Wasikowska in the lead role.

She’s helped along by Fassbender, who portrays the gruff Mr. Rochester, as well as Dame Judi Dench, even if her role is more of a supporting one.

The focus is on Eyre’s period under Rochester, so there’s less time spent on the earlier part of her journey, but Fukunaga still manages to bring out the horrors of Eyre’s early life when she suffered under the tyranny of horrid school masters and Mrs. Reed (Sally Hawkins). Some parts are undoubtedly hurried; Rochester’s shift from brooding to love-struck takes place almost too quickly.

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Even if the story has been done to death and this is the compressed Cliff Note’s version, Fukunaga still injects a fresh, bold take on the classic tale.