Robert Pattinson, cinematography outperform “Water for Elephants”
By Kim Palacios
hollywoodnews.com: “Water for Elephants” as a whole clearly missed the mark—but not all aspects of the film are coming under fire. While some critiques of the film’s shortcomings have been scathing, both the cinematography and Robert Pattinson’s performances have been praised.
The thumbs up for Pattinson is led by moviegoers from the Twilight fandom, who enjoyed seeing Pattinson in a different kind of role. Pattinson’s character, the gentle, capable, and companionable Jacob Jankowski is dissimilar to Edward Cullen (The Twilight Saga), Tyler Hawkins (Remember Me), and Art (How to Be), who are each at best socially awkward and, in some cases, downright misanthropic. Though “Water for Elephants” is as full of angst as Pattinson’s other films, the angst plays differently for Pattinson’s character. Whereas his earlier characters struggled with being driven by fear and insecurity, Jankowski is driven by confidence and hope.
As for the other win, most critics agreed that what the screenplay lacked, the cinematography smoothed over. Said Wesley Morris of The Boston Globe, ““The camera, costumes, and art direction do everything right. Too much so. The movie strips away both the grand weirdness of the circus and the dire desolation of the Depression.” Echoed Joe Morgenstern of The Wall Street Journal, “Rodrigo Prieto’s cinematography gives the whole production an evocative beauty that it never earns dramatically.” Many other critics cited bad chemistry among the actors–if not casting overall–as the major failures of the film.
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