Jane Eyre 1970

Susannah York, George C. Scott

"But I loved her once as I love you now." -Mr. Rochester

"You cannot just love God alone." -Jane

I feel that this version is the first to approach the story of "Jane Eyre" as it is, rather than as a dramatic rendering. It's somber and dreamy and pretty straightforward in portraying the scenes. Not that the characterizations are all correct. Susannah York's Jane is mature- reflective of the actress's age undoubtedly, and George C. Scott is curiously cold and dry most of the time. St. John Rivers is surprisingly passionate and eager to marry Jane even though he still doesn't love her.

The production benefits from location shooting (first version to shoot on the moors?), and wonderful music which goes a long way to filling in the passion and romance that is lacking in the actors. Much attention is paid to the character of Helen Burns here which is a plus- the audience really gets to see how Helen helped Jane to grow. The script in itself is okay, until the blundering line of Rochester's "But I loved her once, as I love you now." when Rochester has shown Bertha to Jane and the wedding party. I find that line basically undermines Rochester's love for Jane. It is important to understand that Rochester did not love Bertha at all so then Rochester doesn't seem so much like a jerk.

Well. This version has some issues, but to see it after the previous versions, it is a breath of fresh air because it comes closer to recreating the novel proper.