Water for Elephants / De l'eau pour les éléphants (Bilingual)
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Sara Gruen's bestselling novel comes to glossy life in this period romance. A sparkle-free Robert Pattinson plays Jacob Jankowski, who studies veterinary medicine during the Great Depression. After a family tragedy, he loses everything, including the chance to graduate from prestigious Cornell, so he hops a train, where he finds himself part of the struggling Benzini Brothers Circus. Ringleader August (Christoph Waltz, echoing his Oscar-winning Inglourious Basterds performance) has doubts about the softhearted lad, but a fellow Pole smoothes the way, and Jacob becomes the company vet, which leads him to platinum-blond equestrian Marlena (Reese Witherspoon), August's wife. The two make eyes at each other, but an affair would surely end badly, so they concentrate on their work. When Marlena's prize steed falls ill, August purchases an elephant, hoping Rosie will turn their fortunes around, and enlists Jacob to train her. Unfortunately, she's slow to respond to commands until Jankowski unlocks her secret--and after August has beaten the poor thing into submission. After that, things start to look up until Jacob steals a kiss from his dream girl. As in The Notebook, the film it most closely resembles, an elderly version of the central character (Hal Holbrook, touching) narrates in the present day (screenwriter Richard LaGravenese also adapted The Bridges of Madison County). He tells an interesting tale, so it's too bad the leads strike so few sparks. For those who find big-top classics like Nightmare Alley too dark, however, Francis Lawrence's feel-better variant may be just the ticket. --Kathleen C. Fennessy
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Top Customer Reviews
I wish they would stop beating up Robs characters or at least let him get a few punches in.
It was wonderful to see Rob with a tan, this character went out in the sun thank goodness.
Thumbs up for Rob and Water for Elephants.
Heart throb Robert Patterson is a slightly better caliber actor in this one than what we have seen in "Twilight." The movie is more than a love story, it is also a PETA commercial for the abuse of circus animals in the name of the almighty dollar. Christopher Waltz plays an excellent jealous insecure "bad guy." Reese Witherspoon was not the perky blond we are used to seeing. She appears to be miscast in the role and doesn't look natural with the 30's hair style. Don't get me wrong, she wasn't bad, they just didn't write lines for her. 5 stars for those who enjoy an old fashion forbidden romance with an elephant.
No f-bombs. Violence to animals and women, quick love scene, brief 30's style French postcard type nudity, Robert Patterson's acting.
Most recent customer reviews
Very well done and after reading the book was a bit hesitant to watch the movie as the book was so excellent, but it was a very nice surprise.Published 12 months ago by me
Mom loved this movie so I suppose it was avgood buy. Thanks for the smooth transaction.Published 15 months ago by Breanna
If you read the novel and loved it, you'll love the movie, too. Both are well worth investing some time to enjoy.Published on April 3 2014 by Cathy Walters