We Bought a Zoo

We Bought a Zoo

A film by Cameron Crowe

Movie review

You know how Lloyd Dobler said he was "looking for a dare-to-be-great situation" in Say Anything, Cameron Crowe’s first movie? Well, Benjamin Mee (Matt Damon), the protagonist of the filmmaker’s latest, has found that situation. Recently widowed, this journalist decides against all odds to buy a quasi-abandoned zoo in Southern California, along with the 47 species of wild animals that live in it, in order to give his kids a genuine adventure to enjoy, and to help them – and himself – in their grieving process. While based on a real story, you can tell that Crowe poured a lot of his own thoughts and feelings into this adaptation of Mee’s memoir, ultimately making it as personal as all his other films. We Bought a Zoo is a great family film in the best sense of the term, as sentimental as it gets but also full of life, humour and, naturally, lots of great music, including an amazing original score by Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi that embodies all the wonder and whimsy that define the film, right up to the Billy Wilder-perfect ending.

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We Bought a Zoo