Water for Elephants, directed by Francis Lawrence, and having Robert Pattison, Reese Witherspoon and Christopher Waltz in leading roles is a good movie, worth seen. And, it is kept close to Sara Gruen's book, as close as they could get, the way I see it.
The different relationships, both the good and the bad ones, are painted masterly, and you start caring about the characters, not to forget the animals. Rosie, the elephant, makes a big chunk of this movie, and this not only in a literally way. If you didn't think you could have feelings for an elephant, well, go and see this movie!
The main story is the same as the book: Young Jacob Jankowski joins a traveling circus, meets the love of his life. And, they have kept the wonderful aspect of the old man looking back, reminding us of the fact that a person doesn't become somebody different, just because he or she is aging.
And, I brought two teenagers and an eleven-year-old (In Norway the rating is 11 years for this movie), and they all absolutely loved the experience. Some violent scenes, though, with fighting and the movie's "bad guy" treating the animals less than well..., so I would strongly encourage parents to watch this together with their older kids, just so you can talk through it afterwards.
To finish, my Twilight-loving fourteen-year-old didn't think she could separate Pattison from Edward Cullen, but she totally forgot about the vampire, realizing that good actors can be very different characters.