Run time: 142 mins
In Theaters: Friday 7th February 1986
Distributed by: Paramount Home Video
Production compaines: Capital Equipment Leasing, Paramount Pictures
Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 57%
Fresh: 4 Rotten: 3
IMDB: 7.2 / 10
Director: Trevor Nunn
Producer: Peter Snell
Screenwriter: David Edgar
Starring: Helena Bonham Carter as Lady Jane Grey, Cary Elwes as Guilford Dudley, John Wood as John Dudley, Duke of Nothumberland, Patrick Stewart as Henry Grey, Duke of Suffolk, Joss Ackland as Sir John Bridges
Starring Helena Bonham Carter as the little queen and Cary Elwes as her arranged husband, Jane dutifully takes us through her religious devotion, the difficulties of being married to a womanizer and drunk, their eventual coming around to love one another, Jane's rise to queen and rapid deposition, and eventually, her execution at the hands of Bloody Mary.
History buffs will probably enjoy the film, though little of it will come as a surprise. There just isn't much behind-the-scenes detail that you can't easily find in an encyclopedia entry, and reading that isn't going to take you 140 minutes.
Lady Jane isn't without its charms. A very young Carter and Elwes turn in interesting performances. Seeing Carter's bushy eyebrows alone are worth at least a minute of your time. John Wood and an already-bald Patrick Stewart are also fun performances.
In the end I'm reminded of Elizabeth, although it was far more lush a production, which was equally straightforward and ultimately soulless. The good news is that Jane Grey had a heart with Elizabeth did not. And that alone makes the film somewhat worth watching.