Jane Eyre (1970) Rated NR

Jane Eyre 1970An orphan, Jane Eyre is sent to the Lowood School. Upon graduation, she accepts a position as governess for the petulant daughter of the imposing Edward Rochester.  Despite many obstacles, love grows between them. Based on the book by Charlotte Brontë. Starring George C. Scott, Susannah York, Ian Bannen

I have to say I was taken aback by George C. Scott as Mr. Rochester. At first, I was terrified of him and wondered how on earth Jane was going to fall in love with him. By the end of the film, I still couldn’t understand what drew her to this hardened man.  Of course, that has always been my issue with Jane Eyre; it has never made sense to me.  I should probably read the book, but I’ve never been interested enough to try.

That said, Scott is actually perfect as Mr. Rochester; his harshness and acerbity somehow makes him all the more lovable. Susannah York is too pretty to play Jane, but she was otherwise adequate in her role.

This version does condense the story, both removing and changing key elements to the original.  For example, there are no scenes between Jane and her aunt, and the inheritance plot is also left out.  Although it is not my favorite film version of the story, I would still say it is worth a watch.

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