Screen Junkies » water for elephants http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Wed, 17 Sep 2014 01:59:03 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 Weekend Box Office Report: Back In ‘Rio’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/weekend-box-office-report-back-in-rio/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/weekend-box-office-report-back-in-rio/#comments Mon, 25 Apr 2011 16:03:46 +0000 Joseph Gibson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=208771 'Tyler Perry's Madea's Rio' would have grossed ANOTHER 50 million, easily.

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As many of you sinners may or may not be aware, last weekend was Easter weekend, commemorating the day in history when the Easter bunny rose from the dead on the third chocolate, or something. And it’s traditionally a good weekend for movies – a rule which held true this particular Easter weekend.

The number one movie for the second week in a row is Rio, with a weekend gross of $26.8 million. I already used up all my Rio jokes last week, so write your own! This ain’t the joke train, mister. In second, third, and sixth place are three new releases: The overly possessive Tyler Perry’s Madea‘s Big Happy Family, Water for Elephants, and African Cats, proving that America loves cats, elephants, and large sassy black women played by men. This bodes well for my screenplay Madea Saves Cats and Elephants, coming to a theater near you. (Box Office Mojo)

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Review: Water For Elephants http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/review-water-for-elephants/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-review/review-water-for-elephants/#comments Thu, 21 Apr 2011 22:58:48 +0000 Fred Topel http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=208116 Looks great, but feels just like all the other historical epic romances.

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Water for Elephants has great production value. It’s a period piece that takes you back to Depression era circus road shows like old time Hollywood productions. It’s also just like all the other historical epic romances. Coming of age, forbidden romance, oppressive older generation and present day bookends because nobody thinks they can just start the story in the past.

Jacob Jankowsky (Hal Hobrook and then Robert Pattinson) wanders up to a closed circus in present day and starts telling the story of how he remembered the great Benzini Bros. tragedy of 1931. Back in ’31, Jacob (Pattinson now) had everything going for him, about to graduate Cornell veterinary school, until his parents die in an automobile accident.

The banker is blatantly insensitive, criticizing Jacob’s generous father for helping people without pay. That’ll teach him to put a lien on his business for his son’s tuition. Jacob hops a train that happens to be the Benzini Brothers’. August (Christoph Waltz) gives Jacob a Training Day about the circus, only it’s over the course of the movie so it’s not really a Day.

August’s wife Marlena (Reese Witherspoon) is the star performer, an acrobat who works with the horse Silver Star. Jacob’s first act as circus vet is to put Silver Star down, so he bonds with Marlena over that heartbreak. Marlena already hates her husband, and rightfully so because he’s abusive, but it’s just artificially constructing a “forbidden” love. Except for a mutual affection for animals, Marlena and Jacob don’t have any real connection. They’re just there to be the romance.

Every theme in the movie is spelled out for you. The college boy has no real world experience. The boss works people and animals to death, literally. Did you forget the bookend with old Jacob? There’s a tragedy coming too.

To replace Silver Star, August buys Rosie the elephant. Rosie does some amazing stunts in one take, some with Witherspoon doing acrobatics herself. It’s just dressing up a domestic abuse story. August gets violent with Rosie and then cries apologetically. Jacob tries to save Marlena like she’s Rose in Titanic. Still, when Jacob threatens August’s life, I never for a moment believed he was going to go there.

By the time we see the tragic circus disaster, it’s revealed already in progress which is an interesting way to present it. Water for Elephants actually has the ending I wanted Titanic to have, but no, I never wanted it as saccharin as the final bookend makes it.

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The 9 Greatest Circus Movies On Earth http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-lists/the-9-greatest-circus-movies-on-earth/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-lists/the-9-greatest-circus-movies-on-earth/#comments Tue, 19 Apr 2011 20:50:23 +0000 Jame Gumb http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=207745 If I was forced to watch a circus film, I'd choose from one of the following nine options, since they contain less in the way of twinkish vampires.

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Water for Elephants tells the story of a blond lawyer, a vampire, and a Nazi who all get jobs at the circus. And based on the name alone, I’m sure it will go down as one of the greatest circus films of all time. Rest assured, I’m not just saying that because the studio is paying us.

Wait, the studio really isn’t paying? In that case, there is no way in hell I’ll ever sit through this film. First of all, circuses make me sad. Second, the name alone is enough to keep me away. Third, if I was forced to watch a circus film, I’d choose from one of the following nine options, instead, since they contain less in the way of twinkish vampires.

At the Circus – (1939)

This is one of the dumbest films ever made. But like Troll 2 or The Room, it’s so bad, you can’t help but watch. The premise is simple: Aliens resembling clowns arrive on earth and begin harvesting people to place in their cotton-candy cocoons. If that doesn’t terrify you, maybe you should stick with Attack of the Killer Tomatoes.

Freaks – (1932)

Notable for its time, Freaks cast real circus performers rather than actors in makeup, a fact that gives the film an extremely creepy vibe. But if there’s one thing to be learned from this movie, it’s that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. If there’s another lesson to be learned, it’s stay away from freaks, because of you get on their bad side, they will gang up and stab you to death.

Big Top Pee-wee – (1988)

It’s hard to believe that when this circus-themed film came out in 1998, the kissing-scene was criticized for being too risque for children. Luckily, three years later Paul Reubens (Pee-wee) was arrested in a porno theater, which kind of took the heat off.

Something Wicked This Way Comes – (1983)

Based on a story by Ray Bradbury, Something Wicked This Way Comes tells the tale of Mr. Dark, an evil circus owner who grants people their childhood wishes, but not without horrible, unforeseen consequences. It’s a lot like The Monkey’s Paw, except with less Monkeys, and more Jason Robards. That’s a good trade, in my opinion.

The Greatest Show On Earth – (1952)

Legendary director Cecil B. DeMille’s classic, The Greatest Show On Earth, comes across as a documentary despite being a fictional tale. This is because his actors actually trained to perform the acts of their characters, and actual circus performers were used throughout the film. Despite the realism, there is no scene where a red-hot poker is shoved up an elephant’s ass in order to make it dance.

The Elephant Man – (1980)

Apparently, circuses and carnival side shows were a lot less family friendly in 19th Century Europe. The Elephant Man tells the story of Joseph Merrick, whose facial deformities earned him the “elephant man” nickname. Merrick ended up touring in a sideshow before being rescue by a kindly surgeon. Directed by David Lynch, it’s clearly one of his more straightforward, linear films. As such, he felt no need to compensate with random lesbianism, which is my only real criticism.

The Circus – (1928)

Like The Marx Brothers, the setting of a Charlie Chaplin film is somewhat irrelevant. His beloved Tramp character finds humor wherever he goes. In this film, he’s at the circus. Hilarity ensues. That is all.

Dumbo – (1941)

One of Disney’s most popular cartoons, Dumbo, tells the story of a baby circus elephant who is cruelly mocked for his large ears. However, through hard work and perseverance, Dumbo manages to turn his perceived flaw into an asset, teaching himself to fly using his ears as wings. Of course, this film might seem quaint, given that the bullied children of today can simply enact a school shooting to get back at their tormentors. Even so, the film contains some of the most celebrated depictions of circus life in the history of cinema.

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Robert Pattinson Breaks Circus Law In New ‘Water For Elephants’ Trailer http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/robert-pattinson-breaks-circus-law-in-new-water-for-elephants-trailer/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/robert-pattinson-breaks-circus-law-in-new-water-for-elephants-trailer/#comments Fri, 04 Mar 2011 05:17:08 +0000 Geoffrey Golden http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=Video&p=37924 When you break a circus law, you pay the circus price.

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When yo break a circus law, you pay the circus price. And circus court is on a fast-moving circus train. Also: circuses.

Here’s another trailer for the Robert Pattinson / Reese Witherspoon romantic period drama Water For Elephants. In the trailer, we see that Pattinson’s parents both die suddenly, so naturally my first reaction was, “does he become a Batman?” Sadly, no. The would-be doctor joins the circus, makes the wife of the circus boss (Witherspoon) a Team Edward die-hard and trouble ensues. Director Francis Lawrence (I Am Legend) helmed the adaptation of author Sara Gruen’s book.

Water For Elephants drives its clown car into theaters April 22nd. Will Twilight fans in theaters scream “Bella” every time Pattinson kisses Witherspoon? It’s a risk I’m not interested in taking.

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Cathartic News: Robert Pattinson Gets Beaten Up In ‘Water For Elephants’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/cathartic-news-robert-pattinson-gets-beaten-up-in-water-for-elephants/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/cathartic-news-robert-pattinson-gets-beaten-up-in-water-for-elephants/#comments Fri, 18 Feb 2011 00:37:28 +0000 Geoffrey Golden http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=Video&p=27967 If you've ever thought, "it'd be fun to beat the sh*t out of Robert Pattinson," you'll be jealous of a few lucky actors cast in 'Water For Elephants.'

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If you’ve ever thought, “it’d be fun to beat the shit out of Robert Pattinson,” you’ll be jealous of a few lucky actors cast in Water For Elephants. Directed by Francis Lawrence’s (I Am Legend), co-starring Reese Witherspoon, Pattinson tells an Entertainment Tonight reporter (ugh) that he’s gonna get his sparkly vampire butt kicked in the film.

Anytime there’s any sort of love scene or anything, I always end up getting beaten up… Our most romantic moment [in the movie] is me getting beaten up by about ten guys.

If you can withstand the full-on “glitz” of ET – I literally cringed all the way through – you can see the whole interview above.

If you’d rather see Legally Blonde get into a cat fight, that may or may not happen to Pattinson’s new love interest in the movie. However, in real life, hundreds of crazy Team Edward tweens are probably waiting for Witherspoon to let her guard down in a parking lot, where they will mercilessly pounce on her, attempt to suck her blood, then get tazed by her bodyguard, who was just in the Starbucks for, like, a second.

Below is the synopsis for Water For Elephants, stampeding over Pattinson and into theaters soon. (Collider)

Veterinary school student Jacob (Pattinson) meets and falls in love with Marlena (Witherspoon), a star performer in a circus of a bygone era. They discover beauty amidst the world of the Big Top, and come together through their compassion for a special elephant. Against all odds – including the wrath of Marlena’s charismatic but dangerous husband, August (Christopher Waltz) – Jacob and Marlena find lifelong love.

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Robert Pattinson Rides Elephants, Reese Witherspoon http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/water-for-elephants-trailer/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/water-for-elephants-trailer/#comments Thu, 16 Dec 2010 02:06:18 +0000 Jame Gumb http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=Video&p=12562 Do you like water? Do you like elephants? Do you like that pale dude from Twilight? Well, two out of three ain't bad, so watch this trailer for Water for Elephants, starring Robert Pattinson, Christoph Waltz and Reese Witherspoon.

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Do you like water? Do you like elephants? Do you like that pale dude from Twilight? Well, two out of three ain’t bad, so watch this trailer for Water for Elephants, starring Robert Pattinson, Christoph Waltz and Reese Witherspoon.

The film tells the story of an old-timey circus and some dude (Pattinson) who is in love with an elephant (Witherspoon). At least that’s what I assume, since I didn’t actually watch the trailer. I’ve been afraid of the circus ever since my parents sold me to one. Wait, a circus is a warehouse where you sew fake Prada handbags, right? Oh. Well just watch this trailer, anyway.

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