Water for Elephants (2011)

Water for Elephants (2011)

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Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

As a young man, Jacob Jankowski (Pattinson) was tossed by fate onto a rickety train that was home to the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. It was the early part of the great Depression, and for Jacob (Holbrook), now ninety, the circus world he remembers was both his salvation and a living hell…
Director: Francis Lawrence
Writers: Richard LaGravenese (screenplay), Sara Gruen (novel)
Stars: Robert Pattinson, Reese Witherspoon and Christoph Waltz
Production Co: 3 Arts Entertainment, Crazy Horse Effects, Flashpoint Entertainment, Fox 2000 Pictures
Release Date: 22 April 2011 (USA)

Storyline/Plot

As a young man, Jacob Jankowski (Pattinson) was tossed by fate onto a rickety train that was home to the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. It was the early part of the great Depression, and for Jacob (Holbrook), now ninety, the circus world he remembers was both his salvation and a living hell. A veterinary student just shy of a degree, he was put in charge of caring for the circus menagerie.

water-for-elephants-poster.jpg

It was there that he met Marlena, (Witherspoon) the beautiful equestrian star married to August (Waltz), the charismatic but twisted animal trainer. And he met Rosie, an un-trainable elephant who was the great gray hope for this third-rate traveling show. The bond that grew among this unlikely trio was one of love and trust, and, ultimately, it was their only hope for survival.

Water for Elephants Trailer

Cast

Robert Pattinson
Jacob Jankowski
Reese Witherspoon
Marlena Rosenbluth
Christoph Waltz
August Rosenbluth
James Frain
Rosie’s Caretaker
Hal Holbrook
Jacob Jankowski – older
Paul Schneider
Charlie O’Brien
Tim Guinee
Diamond Joe
Dan Lauria
Sheriff
Mark Povinelli
Kinko
Ken Foree
Earl
Scott MacDonald
Blackie
Donna W. Scott
Barbara
Sam Anderson
Mr. Hyde
Richard Brake
Grady
Jim Norton
Camel

Official site

www.waterforelephants.com

Critic Reviews

Score
90
Variety

The filmmakers clearly value their public, crafting a splendid period swooner that delivers classic romance and an indelible insider’s view of 1930s circus life.
75
Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

In an age of prefabricated special effects and obviously phony spectacle, it’s sort of old-fashioned (and a pleasure) to see a movie made of real people and plausible sets.
75
San Francisco Chronicle Mick LaSalle

In Water for Elephants, Waltz plays a circus owner and ringleader during the Great Depression, and when he’s onscreen, every eye is on him, no matter who is talking.
70
Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

If the circus is a hierarchical pyramid, August is at the very top. It’s a part tailor-made for the accomplished Waltz, an Oscar winner for “Inglourious Basterds,” and he eats it alive.
63
Washington Post Michael O’Sullivan

Big, slick and showy. It is also undeniably effective entertainment.
63
USA Today Claudia Puig

Mildly entertaining, though the best performances come not from the stars, but the supporting players.
63
Rolling Stone Peter Travers

It’s all in the telling. Gruen provided grit and pungent detail. The movie settles for gloss.
58
Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

Something is wrong under this big tent. Actually made to resemble a good old-fashioned, crowd-pleasing movie, this cinematic Water for Elephants droops and lumbers like Rosie the elephant herself.
20
The New York Times Stephen Holden

Short-circuits the novel’s quirky charms and period atmosphere by its squeamish attitude toward gritty circus life and smothers the drama under James Newton Howard’s insufferable wall-to-wall musical soup.
20
Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

How do I count the ways this movie goes wrong?

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