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After a bleak childhood, Jane Eyre ventures into the world to become a governess. As she lives happily in her new position at Thornfield Hall, she meets the dark master of the house, Mr Rochester. As the friendship between them continues to grow, she finds herself falling in love with him. Sounds quite a bit like a chick flick doesn't it? Even though the story deals with romance, I wouldn't suggest Jane Eyre (2011) is a movie entirely made for female audiences. This screenplay proves that audiences don't need big explosions and constant action in order to be entertained. The dialogue is very well-written and is sure to engross viewers. As we learn more about Jane, it's difficult not to feel sympathy for her. She's a likable character. Jane's childhood isn't the only dark element of the film. The script is consistently moody. As we're introduced to her cold master, he's extremely mysterious and it keeps the viewers uneasy about his way of thinking. Don't expect a smooth transition from the conclusion to the closing credits. Jane Eyre (2011) ends abruptly, which might get bad feedback from some audiences. Otherwise, the pacing is seamless and kept me interested from start to finish.
The script successfully develops Jane for the audience, but the phenomenal Mia Wasikowska brings the character to life. She's excellent on every level. There isn't one moment where Wasikowska isn't completely believable in her role. I've been a fan of hers for a couple years now and this film proves how talented she is. Mia Wasikowska dominated this character with an iron fist. Michael Fassbender performs as her master, Rochester. He has now been seen in a wide variety of different characters. When an actor can take on any persona, it shows true talent. Fans of the books and the films will be more than satisfied with Fassbender's performance. Once Wasikowska and Fassbender are on screen together, their chemistry feels natural. The entire cast is great, but the two leads shine the brightest.
The gothic romance carries over into the visual department. Atmosphere and tone are very important elements in Jane Eyre (2011). The sets are dreary and poetic as they are filled with ink blacks. Cinematography is outstanding and tells a story by itself. Those who have a good home theater system are sure to be pleased with the audio. I never expected to hear what was presented in Jane Eyre (2011). The surround channels are effective to say the least. Each speaker pours out crisp sound, creating a full environment for the viewers to be surrounded by. Even the subwoofer has several sequences of bass that shake the floorboards.
Most audiences have probably already seen at least one of the past Jane Eyre productions. This new adaptation is absolutely worth watching. Not only is the script good, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Mia Wasikowska among the nominees for this year's Academy Awards for Best Actress. Male viewers shouldn't worry about this being aimed towards women. It certainly isn't. This is a beautiful story with dialogue and visuals best described as gothic poetry. Jane Eyre (2011) is an intelligent film that comes with easy recommendation.