Director Francis Lawrence's Depression era Circus set love story is one of those inoffensively lifeless period drama's that never quite sparks to life in the way perhaps he thinks it does.
Bookended by a present day setting the film finds us flashing back to Jacob (Robert Pattinson) who has been dealt a couple of hard knocks that see him find his way into being a stowaway on a Circus train. His Veterinary training coming in useful he finds work there and soon finds himself caught up in a classic love triangle between the brutish Circus owner (played by Christophe Waltz who can do this kind of thing in his sleep) and the beautiful Marlene (Reese Witherspoon), his wife and a performer.
There's not a whole lot of real chemistry between Witherspoon and Pattinson though, but the film is nicely produced with the old fashioned feel of being a film not commonly made anymore and it rattles along a relatively safe path until it's conclusion. I guess I'd describe it best as the sort of film that could easily pass a lazy Sunday afternoon but which I don't think I would rush to rewatch.