Jane Eyre 1997

Samantha Morton, Ciaran Hinds

"You make love sound unpleasant." -Jane

"It's not me who's told lies, I have no secret husband." -Jane

Truthfully, I dislike this version. It makes me laugh though, because I don't understand how they could have gotten so many things wrong. The script is awful, Ciaran Hinds is horrible as Rochester, and Samantha Morton is a little annoying. Though that is probably the script. So let's start there. We have your average truncated adaptation which makes sense- they cut things that most shorter film adaptations cut, but the dialogue! It's too modern and direct. Jane addresses Rochester in a way that is not in keeping with her sense of propriety. Of course Rochester doesn't hold much with formal conversations with Jane in the book, but his conversation in this film has none of the poetic prose of the novel. It's all very cliched and off-putting.

Since Grace Poole is made a much bigger mystery in this version than in previous ones- Jane's eagerness to rehabilitate her make sense, but is an unnecessary addition to the plot. Especially as Jane keeps harping on what Grace Poole is doing. Ciaran Hinds as Rochester is shouty and brutish and especially distasteful after the failed wedding. He throws Jane's luggage down to the first floor and drags her to the garden, blaming her for not loving him enough to be his mistress. The only time I liked Samantha and Ciaran's chemistry was after the fire in Rochester's bedroom, when he took her hand. After that it was too much panting and open-mouthed kissing. Yikes.

The only scene that was enjoyable was when Jane comes back from visiting Mrs. Reed (curious how they lead up to that scene, but did not show her with Mrs. Reed at all) and Mr. Rochester is happy/annoyed at seeing Jane walking into Thornfield. It was a cute scene. Other than that, I wouldn't really recommend this if you wanted a romantic version.