A widower (Matt Damon) purchases a zoo in order to bring his family back together in this Twentieth Century Fox adaptation of Benjamin Mee's autobiographical memoir. Cameron Crowe (Almost Famous) writes and directs based on a script by Aline Brosh McKenna. ~ Jeremy Wheeler, Rovi
Reallly enjoyed this movie. Matt Damon is great in it. The zoo crew was interesting...kind of like Larry, Daryl and Daryl. I didn't understand why Scarlett Johansson sounded like she was from Fargo, ND. It didn't have much to do with the plot, but it was sort of cute. The only problem that I had with it was Elle Fanning (Maggie) calling the zoo inspector a bad name. S'cuze me, this is a kids movie, isn't it? Bad choice of wording. I wouldn't want to explain that to a kid or have he or she repeat it.
This is a first rate family movie that succeeds on many levels. First of all it has many interesting and likeable characters. The acting by Matt Damon, Scarlett Johansson and Maggie Jones as well as several of the supporting players were all outstanding. There is both much humor and sadness in this unusual slice of life story of a family struggling to hold together. We even care about the animals! If you like family movies this one draws you in and doesn't let go. Great job all around.
At the end it credits this movie being based on a real life zoo but the story of these character is dramatically different than in real life. Other than that, it is a quirky little film. It teaches us that tragic losses in life can result in joy and lessons along the way if we take a chance and step out of our comfort zone and not let others guide our lives.
Very funny! Scarlett Johansson was wonderful. Benjamin Mee is a very likable character, someone you'd like to hang out with. Maggie Elizabeth Jones was Marvelous. As others have mentioned it is not meant to be a comedy but it is. It is also a movie about grief and figuring out how to survive it.
We rented this for a family movie night (kids 3, 5, 5). They liked the movie, but there were several instances where there's cussing. We weren't really prepared for it, and it pops up several times throughout the movie. If this isn't an issue for you, then I'd recommend the movie