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Saturday, September 16, 2006

First Fan-Review of Jane Eyre 2006

Laura wrote in to Bronteblog where she had won tickets to the screening this evening of the first two episodes of the BBC series. There isn't much that we did not surmise from the preview clips so far, but there are some particular observations of the acting of the leads:

The foremost thing I took away from the preview was that Ruth Wilson was an absolute delight as Jane. She brought a lot of natural charm to the part and although her performance was subtle, the viewer is left in no doubt of what she is feeling in each scene. In my eyes, she has provided the best performance yet for this character. Ruth's Jane is full of humanity, soul and honesty and she instantly wins your sympathy.


Mr Rochester is one of my favourite characters; he is enigmatic, charming, unpredictable, outspoken and sometimes even manipulative. As you all know, there are many layers to his persona, but Toby seems to have struggled with capturing all of these idiosyncrasies and instead gives (in the first episode at least) what seems to be quite a black and white account. When not being overly gruff, his manner often seems affected and it even comes across that he is not taking the character very seriously…He improves, however, in the second hour, helped along by the fact that he smirks a lot less and is perhaps not quite so sarcastic. It also doesn't do any harm that he is, indeed, partially shirtless in one of the scenes… (Mr Darcy, eat your heart out ;)

The rest of the review is available here. The rest of the review harmonises well with my own opinions on what I have seen as well. Rochester is an incredibly complicated character, and I truly pity any actor who takes him on. It doesn't sound like he fares too badly, however. It sounds like he has given the character scope to develop and probably that would continue into the remaining episodes. I don't recall coming across a predominantly sarcastic protrayal, but the sarcasm is a part of the character (often describes in the novel as sardonic).


starboarder said...

Shirtless! I knew it!! (You can catch a glimpse of it in the trailer - of course I am delighted to hear it confirmed!) Mr. Darcy eat your heart out indeed.

Keeping my fingers crossed that Toby's performance, when viewed in full, is up to scratch. I sort of love him, and will be terribly disappointed if his Rochester is "black and white" - oh, say it isn't so!

I am delighted to hear the Ruth's Jane is convincing and moving. It's funny, isn't it, that somehow all the Janes in film adaptations are sort of brushed aside and forgotten - it's the Rochesters that are always remembered. Hopefully this time we will have a Jane that no one forgets!

mysticgypsy said...

it's the Rochesters that are always remembered.

That's because most of the novel's fans are female ;)

ChrisV said...

The report on the music score sounds promising.

Brontëana said...

to Starboarder:

Would that be the bedroom fire scene? Presumaly he would be soaked with water shortly as well. I have a post here somewhere from when I was considering the BBC series of P&P and realised that it really is something Charlotte would do rather than Jane Austen (I then counted 4 times when Mr Rochester gets soaked in the novel!).

Same here. I have really warmed to the new 'interview' scene. I think he changes quite a bit in that one clip alone. He's very blunt, cynical, brusque and rude to start. But towards the end he seems genuinely concerned that Jane is alone in the world- hifting between sensitivity and cynicism. I like it. In the trailer he seems to have moments where he's very genial so I'm not concerned, really.

I certainly remember them! But we haven't really had memorable performances from our Janes. They've been good for the most part but nothing brilliant so far.

Brontëana said...

to mysticgypsy:

I know a man who had a crush on Jane Eyre!

Brontëana said...

to chrisv:

I thought the music from the Hay Lane scene was excellent, and made the production seem more like a film rather than a television series.

siansaksa said...

To Bronteana:

Just out of curiosity: which are the other two scenes where Rochester gets soaked in the novel? I can think only of two of them (after the fire and after the first proposal) :)

Anonymous said...

Here are the scenes of Rochester soaked (Ahhh, it delights the imagination)

1. The bedroom scene
2. The proposal scene
3. Jane meets Rochester on the road and they get caught in the rain.
4. A blind Rochester stands mournfully outside the door at Ferndean, letting the rain fall on his uncovered head.

Brontëana said...

to siansaska and annonymous:

That's right! The other two might have slipped your memory because they have not appeared on film before (so far?).

siansaksa said...

Ah, you are right; I had some doubts about 3.; I remember it was late in the night and dark, but I did not remember the rain. As for the 4.th one, I might have the Jayston's version too fresh in my mind, and in there there was no rain at all.

pennyforyourdreams said...

I'm so glad Ruth was described in such glowing terms, I think ultimately, despite all the chatter about Mr. Rochester (and Toby), it's her performance that's going to matter. And I've been impressed with what I've seen so far in the (oh so brief) clips.

That said, yay, shirtless, slightly singed, and hopefully entirely drenched Mr. Rochester.

I've never actually seen an adaptation of Jane Eyre and I'm soo excited now.

Brontëana said...

to penny:

Wow, I didn't know that this will be your first adaptation! Exciting! It's great to see people pay more attention to Jane than Rochester too :)

pennyforyourdreams said...

Gosh, my first adaptation, I was a little too young for the 1983 one. Do you think I should buy a cake for the occasion? (As if I need an excuse)

Brontëana said...

to pennyforyourdreams:

I think having a party is well worth it. *sigh* Save me a piece!

*goes off to weep silently in a corner*