Jane Eyre - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Jane Eyre Reviews

Page 1 of 13
December 3, 2017
Visually beautiful film filmed in expressionistic black and white, it couldn't get more gothic than that. The visuals and shadow play play a crucial role in this version of the book, which I have to read now. It's obvious that Orson Welles had a lot to do with the style of the movie, his influence is conspicuous. Equally towering is his performance as erratic Edward Rochester. Joan Fontaine is an angel and she's perfect in this role.
June 23, 2017
Hands down... the first and best version of the book!
August 26, 2016
Love it!! I never thought I could fall in love with Orson Welles but he is absolutely captivating in this movie. Tall, dark, and dangerously intimidating - he's like a force on the screen, with his rumbling baritone and overpowering presence. The story is riveting, from Jane's horrific time at the orphanage (Elizabeth Taylor's small part stayed with me from childhood) to the shocking conclusion. This is one great movie.
January 17, 2016
Well made depiction of the novel. Brilliant acting by Welles and the direction, lighting and filming was good too.
December 7, 2015
Visually perfect - impressive and expressionistic, and truly well scripted. Smart, classic and gloriously gothic. Good cast, with brilliant child actors that includes an uncredited Elizabeth Taylor in a brief but stunningly poignant role.
This bewitching drama starts off w a perfectly toned cruelty that sets up the whole brooding soul of the story, originally written magnetically by Charlotte Bronte.
This film tho is a touchstone for the look and feel of its Gothic style.
Brutal, stark, embellished in black and white and played to the hilt here.
The prominent theme of contrasts is given meticulous, wild, full play here.
Relish each moment bc each frame is enlivened by it.
Fontaine plays Jane as an every-woman, initially a bit too kind and therefore less passionate, despite the perfect tone set by the actress of Jane's childhood, Peggy Anne Garner. Later tho, Fontaine gives a decent contrast to the bitter Rochester formed by the ever intense Welles.
Decent scenes throughout, although the music is too obvious, but forgivable given the time period.
A slow burn throughout, so a touch of fiery Shakespearean intensity wouldnt have hurt at times here.
I otherwise enjoyed each atmospheric frame.

Don't miss the Commentary by Welles biographer Joseph McBride, incredibly insightful and informative - fantastic character analysis, and intriguing background info on all the actors and studio system.
I did my senior English thesis on the Jane Eyre book, and I honestly think that Charlotte would be fully intrigued by this result.

BTW, its not rated, please remove the R rating..lol

4 out of 5
August 8, 2015
much too rushed. the source material is strong enough that it deserves some time to breathe. seems the director was in a hurry. but it's still the definitive version, to me.
½ May 15, 2015
- Really enjoy this film, a great adaptation. The b&w cinematography is stunning, and Welles is great. If you r are a literature or classic film lover, give this one a watch!
May 12, 2015
Starring Orson Welles, Joan Fontaine and Margaret O'Brien. Fine adaptation of Charlotte Bronte's gothic romance, featuring a superb recreation of the fog-bound Yorkshire Moors on a Hollywood soundstage. Fontaine is the title character, who grew up unloved and unwanted at an orphanage. Her Jane later accepts a job as a governess to Margaret O'Brien, unaware that she will also have to deal with her brooding employer Orson Welles, who has some dark secrets to hide. The film is marred only by its unrealistically happy ending and Welles' hammy overacting and ridiculous makeup. Bernard Hermann's score is a fine compliment to the dark and foreboding cinematography. This film is notable as the first in which Welles was merely credited as an actor, though by all accounts he was more involved in the production of the film than the credits indicate. Directed by Robert Stevenson.
May 11, 2015
This is adaptation of the oft-filmed Bronte classic, benefits enormously from Welles' presence as the brooding, tortured Rochester. Welles' theatricals might seem a bit overwrought to a modern viewer, but the performance still stands up as a powerful study in conflicting emotions and inner turmoil. Joan Fontaine, as in Rebecca and Suspicion, is once again on hand as a pallid innocent caught up in tense Gothic drama and responding with a self-sacrificing femininity that hints at co-dependency and masochism. The dark, shadowy noir look of the production suits its Gothic origins and the stylistic emphasis on tight, cramped compositions creates an appropriately claustrophobic atmosphere surrounding the doomed lovers. Margaret O'Brien, the so-charismatic-she-was-almost-spooky child acting prodigy of the age, is well cast as Jane Eyre's sympathetic charge, and her relationship with Jane makes the rough early period of the story watchable, as Rochester fumes and slams his way around.This is by far the best movie version of this beautiful, wonderful book. Charlotte Bronte weaved an incredible tale about an intelligent, early feminist who feels deeply and is full of passion. Orson Wells is a superb Rochester and Joan Fontaine plays Jane the way she was meant to be played: sweet, gentle but strong and intelligent. It's a continual joy to watch and a movie that can definitely be considered a classic from the golden age of Hollywood.
April 13, 2015
Even good friends may be forced to part.

Jane is an orphaned young girl who lives her childhood at an orphanage that is also a prestigious school. After she graduates, she turns down the chance to work at the school in order to build her own life. She takes a job at a manor with a strange lord to help him take care of a sick little girl. She helps raise the girl as mysterious and strange happenings seem to surround the lord.

"We are not here to conform to nature."

Robert Stevenson, director of Mary Poppins, The Love Big, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Herbie Rides Again, Blackbeard's Ghost, Old Yeller, and Dishonored Lady, delivers Jane Eyre. The storyline for this picture was very interesting but a bit slow. The character development and evolution was interesting and the cast delivers worthwhile performances. The cast includes Joan Fontaine, Orson Welles, Margaret O'Brien, Sara Allgood, Agnes Moorehead, and Henry Daniell.

"I'm just a crusty old bachelor."

I came across this on Netflix and decided to add it to the queue. This is a fascinating Orson Welles gem. Joan does a great job portraying a lost girl trying to find her way while Welles delivers his eccentric character beautifully. Overall, this isn't executed flawlessly, but does have a fascinating plot that is worth your time.

"You can't live all alone like the man on the moon."

Grade: B+
½ April 6, 2015
Orson Welles acts as you would expect - dramatically beautifully. And Aldous Huxley is also there, involved in the adaptation / writing of this beautiful story so true to the novel, it's a wonder to watch. 1940's beautiful production
Super Reviewer
½ March 22, 2015
It guts the novel of a crucial plot element (unnecessarily so, as it's a rather short film), but the grand Gothic style is rather entertaining. Also, while Fontaine is solid as Eyre its Welles, who is absolutely perfect as Rochester, that steals the show.
½ January 27, 2015
very well acted, tightly scripted, and romantic
January 20, 2015
My ultimate favorite movie.
January 2, 2015
This was a really good adaption of a great book.
November 4, 2014
While not the most groundbreaking or distinct period piece ever conceived, Stevenson's 'Eyre' is still very well performed and atmospherically shot.
½ March 22, 2014
Orson Welles, you are my favourite. Despite the fact Rochester is supposed to be 40 and Welles was 28 at the time of filming (which makes me feel old), I kind of loved this a lot. Welles' interpretation of Rochester seemed to be all in reaction shots, which were amazing.
½ January 30, 2014
Wednesday, January 22, 2014

(1944) Jane Eyre

Adapted from the Emily Bronte novel starring Joan Fontaine as the title character, and it appears that she could've been a heiress had it not been for the wicked step mother. She then goes to a boarding school and while there finds that the authoritarian Henry Brocklehurst( Henry Daniell) is a Christian fanatic- you know the ones who punishes underlings heavy for minor things. And as Jane improves her studies, she then rebels against his offer since Henry wanted to hire her to be another instructor that just stands there taking orders. And goes to work for a wealthy baron Edward Rochester (Orson Welles) teaching 8 year old daughter Adele (Margret O'Brien) with more mysteries in regarding to the crazed lady who lives by herself in one of the towers.

Gothic and sometimes predictable but because of the performances particularly Orson Welles and Joan Fontaine makes this one worth watching.

3 out of 4 stars
September 22, 2013
Call this version of Jane Eyre Citizen Jane and leave it at that. Fontaine is totally miscast, while the Wellesian touches at the Lowood school are spectacular. Of all the Janes, and there are many so many, this one is probably the best, or would be if Joan Fontaine, reprising her Rebecca performance, didn't sleepwalk through the film.
March 24, 2013
Doesn't matter if you hated getting through the book in high school- Orson Welles's masterful performance and Bernard Herrmann's chilling score are well worth the admission.
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