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Friday, March 1, 2013

Lux Theater - Jane Eyre (14 June 1948)

Posted by Charlene // Tags: , ,
The Lux radio show produced a couple radio adaptations of Jane Eyre, and this is the second one starring Ingrid Bergman and Robert Young.  I haven't had a chance to compare it to the earlier version from 1944, but listening to this, I'm struck by the similarities to the 1943 film starring Joan Fontaine and Orson Welles.  Lux usually adapted well known movies for their radio series, so I'm thinking that is the case for this adaptation as well.

All of my problems with the 1943 film are pretty much in evidence here.  Shortened script (the Lowood scenes are of course much shorter), Doctor Rivers replaces St. John, and is the doctor who helps Mr. Rochester out when Bertha attacks Mason.  There is also that scene where Mr. Rochester basically tells Blanche that she is a gold-digger and I suppose that it is an entertaining moment to listen to, but I would have rather had the gypsy scene!

Ingrid Bergman is a... different choice to play Jane.  Obviously she is a fabulous actress, but she does have a rather prominent accent, although it isn't terribly jarring I suppose.  I just wonder how older Jane developed it, when younger Jane did not have it (or rather when younger Jane had an American accent).  Although Ingrid did sound a bit too demure when she was talking to Rochester, her voiceovers had that touch of defiance that I like to hear and made her a better Jane in my opinion.  Robert Young as Rochester is alright I suppose, his way of conveying gruff and brusque seemed to speak in a low monotone.  I would have liked to hear more in his voice, for him to savor the words more, so in that I was disappointed.

The adaptation overall is really lighter than the original novel and even the 1943 film (which had the brooding lighting and cinematography - and Orson Welles' eyes! - to make it more Gothic).  The music used kind of reminded me of "Gone With the Wind", which didn't help evoke the tone of Jane Eyre.  As an adaptation it lacks a little, but the fact that Ingrid Bergman and Robert Young are even playing the roles kind of make up for it.

Listen to the adaptation

And on a completely different note - check out the nominations for the Book Blogger Twitter Con Awards on Parajunkee!  I'm up for best Noob Blogger so if just one person would vote for me, I'd be so much less mortified. :D  Thanks, and congrats to all the nominees!

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4 comments:

  1. Yeah, I agree that Bergman's accent was peculiar for Jane, but on the other hand - a Swede playing Jane! What's not to like? ;)

    (I may be a little biased.)

    Ahh now I want to listen to the two radio plays where Orson Welles plays Rochester. *cue the DRAMATIC MUSIC*

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    1. LOL, I understand! And I do love Ingrid Bergman, so really I'm not mad at the casting! :D

      Oh Orson Welles, I really have to appreciate how much you loved playing Mr. Rochester!

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  2. Interesting, what a weird choice for Jane! Ingrid Bergman's accent is so distinctive! I need to listen to this! Maybe for the snark? LOL

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    1. I think if you decided to write up some new snark reviews of these adaptations, I would absolutely adore it. :D

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