We Bought A Zoo
Life’s been hard for the Mee family ever since Katherine, their mother, died. Their father, Benjamin Mee, can’t seem to move on. Dylan is expelled from school. Rosie still believes in the Easter Bunny. Their fridge is full of lasagna (from helpful ladies giving to a “family in need”). Their life is a mess and Benjamin Mee doesn’t know what to do about it.
So he decides to start again.
With Rosie in tow, he goes looking for a new house. But when they find “the” house, there’s slight complications attached with it.
It’s a zoo.
Why would someone like Benjamin Mee buy a zoo? He knows nothing about animals. Dylan hates the idea. Rosie loves it. But, really, logically, why would he uproot his family for this?
In My Opinion
Running time: 123 minutes
We Bought A Zoo is a fun, easy movie the whole family will enjoy.
While it has enough substance to keep the older watchers happy, it’s stuffed with animals that will enthral the little ones. Lions. Tigers. (The odd handful of snakes!) An escaped bear. Peacocks. Monkeys. It’s a zoo and it has the works.
The plot is engaging, completed with the funny parts and moving moments. It’s actually based on a true story. Benjamin Mee uproots his entire life to “start new”. And he brings (or in his son’s case, drags) his two children, Dylan and Rosie to the country and he buys a zoo. Why? Well…why not? It’s a great line that appears throughout the movie and ties in at the end. Benjamin Mee’s other catch line is “20 seconds of insane courage”. It’s amazing what you can do in 20 seconds and how it can change your life.
The acting is brilliant, especially seven-year-old Rosie. She’s so bright and buoyant, with a head full of floppy curls and a cute-but-serious way of talking. The zoo keepers and assistants are all well portrayed. The antagonist (the man who inspects the zoo to see if it’s qualified to open) is the slightly corny, typically-average villain. His part isn’t particularly stunning, but it’s needful. Kelly, the head-zookeeper is serious and extra-committed to her job. Her niece is the slightly-freaky-over-the-top-personality homeschooler, who has a huge crush on Dylan. 14-year-old Dylan is an artist and draws dark and creepy things, including decapitations. And, as his father puts it, he’s actually really good at it. And then there’s Benjamin Mee, the father, crazy adventurer and widower. His wife’s death affects the whole family in a real way throughout the movie. As Benjamin Mee says, they just can’t “let go”.