Blu-Ray Review: Mia Wasikowska in Stellar Adaptation of ‘Jane Eyre’

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CHICAGO – “Jane Eyre” is a story that has been adapted multiple times but rarely with the grace, dignity, and level of quality as Cary Joji Fukunaga’s excellent 2011 take on the timeless Charlotte Bronte novel. With impeccable production values that never smother the piece in the musty quality that so often pervades modern period pieces, “Jane Eyre” is an effective, beautiful piece of work. It’s a surprisingly strong drama that deserves a much-wider audience on Blu-ray and DVD.

HollywoodChicago.com Blu-Ray Rating: 4.5/5.0
Blu-Ray Rating: 4.5/5.0

Synopsis:
“Mia Wasikowska (Alice in Wonderland), Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds) and Academy Award® winner Judi Dench (Shakespeare In Love) star in acclaimed director Cary Fukunaga’s daring new adaptation of the timeless romance. When orphaned governess Jane Eyre (Wasikowska) arrives at imposing Thornfield Hall, she’s intrigued by her brooding wealthy employer, Rochester (Fassbender). His dark moods and the strange occurrences in the house lead her to discover a terrible secret that he had hoped to hide from her forever. Critics proclaim this captivating, sensual film is “Beautiful. A splendid example of how to turn a beloved work of classic literature into a movie.” (A.O. Scott, The New York Times)”

Jane Eyre was released on Blu-ray and DVD on August 16th, 2011
Jane Eyre was released on Blu-ray and DVD on August 16th, 2011
Photo credit: Universal

The reason that “Jane Eyre” has supporting multiple interpretations is simple — it is a source material rich with storytelling possibilities. It is a romance that emphasizes a strong female heroine and doesn’t shy away from social issues of the day. Bronte even threw in gothic and supernatural elements. It has a little bit of everything and that has allowed different filmmakers to offer their own takes on the classic story. This is one of the best adaptations yet.

With remarkable restraint in the melodrama department, “Jane Eyre” is a film that I would call “lovely” and not mean it in the slightest bit derogatory. Sure, there are dark elements of this story, but it is the fortitude of its title character (Mia Wasikowska) and the happiness she attempts to find with her wealthy employer (Michael Fassbender) that drives the piece. Fassbender and Wasikowska are two of the most interesting actors working today and they hit not one false note as they portray two people from different worlds drawing closer together and facing obstacles along the way. With stellar performances by its two central characters (and excellent supporting work yet again from Dame Judi Dench), “Jane Eyre” is one of the most well-acted films of the year.

But the best performances wouldn’t elevate “Jane Eyre” enough if not for the stellar adaptation by Moira Buffini, subtle direction by Cary Joji Fukunaga, and all-around above-average production values. “Jane Eyre” is riveting drama, the kind of piece that even those who have avoided period pieces for fear that they may be too stuffy or distant should seek out. There’s a reason that “Jane Eyre” has been adapted repeatedly. It’s a fascinating story that was decades ahead of its time. And this version certainly does its canonical source justice.

Special Features:
o Deleted Scenes
o A Look Inside Jane Eyre
o To Score Jane Eyre: Cary Fukunaga and Dario Marianelli Team Up
o The Mysterious Light of Jane Eyre
o Feature Commentary with Director Cary Fukunaga
o BD Live Enabled
o Pocket Blu

“Jane Eyre” stars Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender, Jamie Bell, and Judi Dench. It was adapted by Moira Buffini and directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga. It was released on Blu-ray and DVD on August 16th, 2011.

HollywoodChicago.com content director Brian Tallerico

By BRIAN TALLERICO
Content Director
HollywoodChicago.com
brian@hollywoodchicago.com

Meghan's picture

Ok, so your review and

Ok, so your review and your synopsis really makes me want to see this. I am glad that it is coming out on Blu-Ray and I will recommend this to someone who I know will love it as well.

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