I had to tell everyone about a truly excellent movie I saw last night! Unfortunately, (fortunately haha) it’s not really a macho movie. But it is still in theaters so everyone can go out and see it today if they feel so inclined! The movie, Water For Elephants (WFE) had everything I could possibly want to see in a film and was exactly the kind of movie I value highly. It had a Titanic, Pearl Harbor, Romeo and Juliet type feel to it.
I went with a couple of my girlfriends because God knows W would never go see a romantic movie with me. But WFE was more than just romance; it was also a period piece that took place during the Great Depression. I loved seeing all the animals in the film as well, the elephant Rosie, pulled at my heartstrings. Why is it that the ugliest of creatures e.g. the ones with all the wrinkles, seem the most loveable?
This film, based on the historical novel by Sara Gruen, which one of my friend’s had read previously to watching the film and highly recommended, centered on the memories of Jacob Jankowski. In the retelling of his life (without giving too much of the plot away), we find out he has experienced a great tragedy that compels him to drop out of college, where he was studying to be a veterinarian. Whether luck or fate, he jumps on a moving train that just happens to be carrying the Benzini Brothers Circus. He is taken on as the circus vet and when the head trainer, August, acquires an elephant that he believes will be a star attraction and finally start bringing in some money, Jacob is in charge of training her. Jacob cannot help falling in love with August’s wife, Marlena, who is a star performer and rides the horses, a major plot line in the story.
Even though I’ve been feeling old lately, with my college graduation only two weeks away, watching this film which centered on the circus reminded me of times past. The circus will forever hold some kind of magic for me and though I haven’t been to one in some time, just like Jacob, who at age 90 “came home” to the circus, I can see myself going back or even taking my children one day.