Water for Elephants

In a start reminiscent of “Titanic”, “Water for Elephants”, begins with an elderly man cornering a young person to recount his life story, only instead of the liner sinking, the major tragedy is the Benzini Bros., renowned as one of the “most famous circus disasters in history during the Depression of 30’s in U.S.

After movies like “I Am Legend” & “Constantine”, director Francis Lawrence digresses with a good old-fashioned romantic triangle adapted from Sara Gruen’s best-seller & makes it engrossing & fascinating. 

Jacob (Robert Pattinson) has his life all planned out for himself. As a young veterinary student, he’s just a final exam away from living his American Dream. Of course, it all comes crumbling down at the very last minute with a sudden blow – both his parents die in a car accident. His house is mortgaged & when the bank’s taken it all, Jacob picks up his last option – he runs away to join the circus.

Enthralled by creating a happy illusion and hiding from the dark realities, is what every Joe in the circus lives by. Fascinated by its charms, Jacob joins this land of villainy, drama, madness & romance to get a new lease of life.

His life is transformed by two females – a glamorous equestrian (Reese Witherspoon) and a polish understanding acrobatic pachyderm (Rosie). Both unfortunately are owned by the sadistic, angry & evil circus boss, August (Christoph Waltz) who’s rumored to throw people off the circus train to cut costs.

Looming large, Rosie is no doubt the star of this show. Her tricks will have you gasp & clap with glee. She even flirts with Pattinson over a drink of lemonade. The “Twilight” star, however, is yet to climb out of the shadows of Edward Cullen. He’s gorgeous ladies, but he’s stiff as an actor. What’s worse, there’s little chemistry between Pattinson and Witherspoon (age difference aside). Although Witherspoon is her usual perky self & looks stunning in all the slinky outfits, she doesn’t seem convincingly in love with Jacob. On the other hand, Mr. Villain, Christoph Waltz, pulls a commendable performance and what a stark difference from his Oscar-winning role in
“Inglourious Basterds”.    

With retro charm & Hollywood fantasy, come relive the traditional magical world of the circus. (The only missing ingredient being romance in a romantic melodrama, what a pity!)  

Verdict: Simply be mesmerized by the world’s most acrobatic elephant – Rosie! A heart-warming tale with old-world charm & romance.

[Rating: 3.5]

Avneet Ghai

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