hopscotchee: michael fassbender score: 67 rating: PG-13 time: 120 minutes
typically when you see a movie like this, you're thinking 'oh...one of those dramatic, classic novel, time-pieces, huh', usually with a little bit of an eye roll and the attitude that you won't watch it, since you're 'not in the mood' for that type of movie, whether that be because it's too old-fashion or too romantic of a watch for you. but that's typically. we don't want to just assume. you might actually be reading this review while re-binging downton abbey for the fiftieth time or were one of the few people who started and loved season one of game of thrones right from the get-go, not because of it's global popularity persuasion, but because you loved the long, drawn out plots and medieval setting. who knows? however if this does not apply to you, we strongly advise you to, like us, go into this movie with the mindset that you'll be swooped off your feet and completely entertained. and don't roll your eyes at that, either!! it seriously could happen. no joke. the 2011 adaptation of charlotte brontë's classic is both a thrilling and engrossingly captivating watch that had us both off the couch, screaming and squealing in anticipation and excitement from frame to frame. and who knows? maybe you too.
aesthetically, to start, the opening shots of the film when (spoiler) jane eyre is escaping thornfield hall and running through the vast, open fields and grand terrain in the windy, sun-setting, environment, are a dreamy and powerful start, comparably living up to the grand hype of charlotte brontë's original, paperback description. not only being super, super moody and eerie to start, but in fact actually really, really emo, the slightly spooky backdrop perfectly fit the gothic feel captured in the o.g. novel that completely went against your typical romance genre, making it an interesting movie-version in contrast to previous hopscotch romances like aloha, the shape of water, or even friends with benefits (or any typical romance movie in general with gleaming, bright filters). needless to say, its strikingly different appeal and mysterious vibe makes the distinction early on that, regardless of whatever was yet to come, the set and design would be a stunningly pleasing and constant strength through the movie's entirety.
falling into the shot comp category, however rightfully needing it's own dutiful mention, the cinematography contributed drastically to the film and its wide range of intense, back-and-forth shifts in mood, which were viable and resonate, for example, with their use of a large scale palette from dismal greys (seen for instance when (spoiler) depicting jane's past at the orphanage), intimate blues (specifically present during (spoiler) jane and rochester's first encounter in the forest or later brilliantly reincorporated, throwing in parallels during the jane-saving-rochester-from-the-fire-scene), intense and intimate oranges (always heatedly woven in when (spoiler) jane slowly started to uncover the mystery at thornfield hall), and playful greens (a pop of brightness adored in the (spoiler) flirtatious montages between jane and rochester in the botanical yard). besides just enacting your recall, more importantly, the overlapping, variety of lighting and filters set up in each scene influences the audience's engagement and enjoyment toward the film by keeping scenes visually diverse to further intrigue with each event. equally, it also builds on the the actors and actresses heavily passionate performance felt during certain scenes, making it not just one of our favorite things to overanalyze in films, but dearly appreciated by films buffs, in general, that most viewers may look pass. if you are one who passes it, let us formally introduce you, it's called cinematography, baby.
next, tapping our hats to the acting, the chemistry between the characters was so, so saucy. oh my gosh. and, previously discussed, on top of the intentionally added cinematography, which sways your emotions along with the film, this made the tension between actors and actresses so, so much more prominent. and this applied to every character. we get that this is jane eyre, a story that, not a spoiler, is all about, well, jane eyre and her stern but handsome, romantic love interest, edward fairfax rochester, the owner of thornfield hall, but, who honestly had our hearts, was our buddy st. john rivers, played by fan favorite, jamie bell. here at home, we are forever in love with billy elliot, so seeing jamie bell all grown up in this film was first like - hold the phone, what? and then when we realized that (spoiler) his character liked jane eyre, it was just bananas from there (hence, the getting up off the couch, standing up, and squealing). and at this point you might be thinking that the cinematography had us swaying too much with the dramatic storytelling of the plot, but isn't it just so much fun sometimes to all of a sudden get super attached and have a strong reaction to characters on screen that were completely made up, and then go about your life like normal, but just for that moment - for those dramatic 120 minutes or whatever it may be - that moment was both of yours. you and that imaginative character. it's something special that makes movies just as magical as they're dreamt up to be. but anyway, sticking to jane eyre, we really appreciated our pal, jamie bell for bringing that to the film. gracias.
so, whether you're into time pieces, old-fashion novels, or classic novels - or, in fact, even familiar and a fan of charlotte brontë's beloved classic or perhaps one of its six other film adaptations, the 2011 interpretation of jane eyre will surely fit your fancy as it greatly captures the enigmatic intensity behind cherished characters and scenery so very well with so much enjoyment and excitement and no eye roll!! yes, go put your mood aside and witness the literal mood that jane eyre is.
-- thanks, michael xo