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Monday Movies: On a Pedestal of Infamy

The chief pleasure of Jane Eyre is Mia Wasikowska. In The Kids Are All Right she mixed a child’s wonder with that of a detective, and the same awestruck intelligence churns behind her eyes here. She slips in and out of brogue a little bit but it makes sense given the character’s patchwork upbringing. Michael Fassbender vaguely resembles Kevin Kline and Jamie Bell vaguely resembles Jesse Eisenberg.

To Jane, truth is everything; the movie sets that up a little too subtly in the childhood scene when Jane is accused of deceitfulness, such that it doesn’t ring in the theme as strongly as needed when she and Rochester begin to get their various ejaculations on. The screenplay and director do a very nice job with their dialogue, which at times approaches the rhythm of Rosalind Russell and Cary Grant. The camera work feels a little too contemporary, combining a super-shallow depth of field and a bland prettiness that recalls International Delight creamer commercials from about ten years ago.

You wouldn’t know from this production that the source text had been the subject of a foundation of feminist literary criticism or an acclaimed postcolonial revision. But you might get the sense that it had withered under the attention.

Like Jane, did you “open [your] inward ear to a tale that was never ended–a tale [someone’s] imagination created, and narrated continuously; quickened with all of incident, life, fire, feeling, that [you] desired and had not in [your] actual existence?” And how’d you like the tale, and what was it rated?

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April 25, 2011 - Posted by | Monday Movies | ,

7 Comments

  1. 4/18/11 – Early Summer – Ozu – Richie commentary
    4/19/11 – We Give Our Lives For Nothing – Kobayashi
    4/20/11 – Distance – Kor-eeda
    4/22/11 – Kimi to Wakarete – Naruse – 1932 silent
    4/23/11 – A City of Sadness – Hou Hsiao-Hsien

    Maybe I was in the right mood, but the last is now in my top ten all-time movies.

    Comment by bob mcmanus | April 25, 2011

  2. I didn’t watch any proper films this week, and that makes me a little sad. All I have out from Netflix is a glut of Jarmusch — if I’m not motivated to watch them soon, I may have to send some back without watching just to get things moving again.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | April 25, 2011

  3. I really enjoyed Jane Eyre. I sometimes forget, when watching a movie made from a familiar novel, that the filmmakers are supposed to make a film of it, rather than simply translating scenes of the book to screen, because so often that’s all they do. Anyway, the folks who made this one did a good job. Even if Michael Fassbender is a little too conventionally pretty to be Rochester. Also, although I loved the Bronte novel growing up, I’ve read Wide Sargasso Sea so much more recently, and its impression on me was so indelible, that I could not help feeling more concern, during the scenes in the attic, for Antoinette than for the chief characters of the film.

    I also saw Hanna. I really wanted to like it, but man, that movie made no damn sense.

    Comment by jms | April 25, 2011

  4. i watched _Ikiru_ the other day, very grim and congrats on the good news
    feels like as if my *mission* here is as if like half-accomplished

    Comment by read | April 25, 2011

  5. I don’t understand your comment, read, and I’m curious. Could you explain please?

    Comment by jms | April 25, 2011

  6. AK got a job which i learnt from twttr browsing and i never commented on the other blog, AUFS to feel safe to comment there and won’t cz i still remember being deleted at the Cr–kd tmbr& TeoAW when commented there for the first time? maybe second, and my commenting often is perceived like spam at different places and about the commenter’s mission – it’s cheering up the proprietors of the blogs you like is my understanding :)

    Comment by read | April 25, 2011

  7. As a blogger, I really wish more people viewed their mission as commenters “cheering up the proprietor”.

    Comment by mattintoledo | April 26, 2011


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