Rated: PG

Distributed By:

20th Century Fox

Directed by:

Cameron Crowe


Scarlett Johansson as Kelly Foster; Matt Damon as Benjamin Mee; Elle Fanning as Lily Miska; Colin Ford as Dylan Mee; Maggie Elizabeth Jones as Rosie Mee; Thomas Haden Church as Duncan Mee

Adapted From:

Plugged In Online

We Bought a Zoo

The Mee family bought a house with a zoo in the backyard. There are tigers, kangaroos, ostriches, a lion. Over 200 animals in all. What kind of family does that? One that needs a fresh start. After the death of their mom, the Mee family has been falling apart. So Dad, Benjamin, quits his job and finds a neat old house on the outskirts of town with a bunch of land. It's perfect for the kids. Fresh air. Nature. Animals. But before they can buy the house, they have to agree to restore the animal park connected to it. The motley zoo crew agrees to help. But money's quickly running out. Can the Mees band together and give the animals a fresh start, too?

We Bought a Zoo celebrates the joy of loving husband/wife relationship. It also explores the great pain that comes with the loss of a person loved so much. Benjamin and his son, Dylan, argue a lot, but they learn how to open up to each other. Benjamin makes a point to show his kids how much he loves them and is devoted to them. Even when people tell the Mee family they’re crazy to buy a zoo, they remain committed to restoring it.

The film does contain more than a handful of cuss words and some scary scenes. For example, a grizzly bear escapes its cage, and Benjamin comes fact-to-face with the animal. And the older son draws a very graphic and scary picture.

The acting is great, the story is good and the ending is sweet. We Bought a Zoo is not a holly jolly film. It’s about a family in mourning that must find a way to trust and love others again. Each family member goes through his or her own journey, but in the end they learn how to open their hearts. And they do it—of all things—by saving a zoo.

Copyright © 2011 by Focus on the Family. Used by permission. Clubhousemagazine.com