Welcome to Girls on Film -- a Monday-night Cinematical column full of female-centric musing, rants, love and aggravation.
Over the last 101 years, there have been 22 film and television productions of Charlotte Brontë's 'Jane Eyre.' Not a decade has gone by that we've not seen at least one project, if not three, or even five (1910-1920). As long as we've had cinema, we've been treated to a long line of Eyres and Rochesters. Jane has been played by the likes of Joan Fontaine, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Samantha Morton, while Rochester has been played by actors like Orson Welles, Charlton Heston, Kevin McCarthy, Timothy Dalton and William Hurt.
Again and again, Jane Eyre has suffered at the hands of the Reeds, before falling for the irascible charms of Edward Rochester. It's a redundancy that proves Hollywood's current love affair with remakes is nothing new. But it also proves the worth of trial and error -- how after a century of treatments, leading talent and directorial eyes, a film finally managed to dig into the heart of Eyre, not as a romantic figure, but as a woman.