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We Bought A Zoo

7.12 h 3 min2011X-RayPG
Set in Southern California, a father moves his young family to the countryside to renovate and re-open a struggling zoo.
Cameron Crowe
Matt DamonScarlett JohanssonElle Fanning
English [CC]
Audio Languages
Rentals include 30 days to start watching this video and 48 hours to finish once started.
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More details

Supporting actors
Thomas Haden Church
Twentieth Century Fox
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Available to watch on supported devices


4.7 out of 5 stars

3285 global ratings

  1. 79% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 13% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 5% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United Kingdom

ShazzaReviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 June 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
we bought a zoo
Verified purchase
definitely one of those films that you want to watch on a sunday afternoon. I have seen this a few times now and I absolutely love it. A really heartwarming film with no swearing, no violence and no blood and guts so obviously but todays standards a lot of people would find it boring but i love it. Matt damon is superb and best of all it is a true story and the zoo is still going today.
8 people found this helpful
Smiler79Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 December 2021
4.0 out of 5 stars
True story!!!
Verified purchase
A comfortable armchair movie for a rainy day when you need to have your spirits lifted. The cast blend well and make everything seem possible. This film has the right blend of human emotion, challenge and commitment, plus appealing roles from the animals. As Matt Damon tells his son 'it takes only 20 seconds to make anything possible', a good one to remember, that and a smile. Five star and perfect family viewing!
Hebrides BaileyReviewed in the United Kingdom on 22 December 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
A feelgood film that deals with tough situations
Verified purchase
I like Matt Damon but I didn't know he had made this until today, and it's good to see him in the role of a real person rather than as an action hero. All the characters are endearing, tugging at heartstrings all the way through. It is definitely something anyone can get emotionally involved with.
Le BlaireauReviewed in the United Kingdom on 13 August 2012
5.0 out of 5 stars
Otterly charming
Verified purchase
Sometimes, I like to see a film that challenges, maybe needs several watches to get everything that's there. And sometimes I like to see a film that delivers, up front, no effort required on my part, and just makes me feel better about life.

And this one fits the second category perfectly. OK, the little girl sometimes runs a dangerous line between delightfully cute and precociously annoying, and Scarlett Johansson can't do dowdy if she tries. But there's a nice interplay between the characters, life lessons are learnt without being shouted out, and throughout the film even when things look like they're going wrong, there's a lovely feelgood atmosphere to the whole piece.

Of course you can pick holes in it if you want, but why would you want to? I don't think I'm introducing any plot spoilers (and in case I am, SPOILER ALERT), but this is a film where you're fairly sure after a few minutes that you know where it's going, and that's fine because it's where you want it to go.

For sure, the whole thing is served up with many teaspoons of sugar, and I imagine that some may find it a bit too cloying. But if you're an old softie like me, you'll lap it up.

I'm sure that this is one of the films that we'll go back to for choice, just when we fancy something to cheer us up. It won't win awards, but this is what I would class as simply a lovely film.
One person found this helpful
Craig A.Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 10 May 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Great film
Verified purchase
Great movie.
Back story is that it is based loosely on a true story about Benjamin Mee. Only difference is that it actually happened in the UK and a built in love story obviously helps with the story too.
Great film for a Sunday afternoon!
Kindle CustomerReviewed in the United Kingdom on 09 May 2022
4.0 out of 5 stars
Charming & Entertaining
Verified purchase
Apparently it’s a true story given the American dream makeover. Who cares? Very watchable with a good cast. Enjoyable family film for a rainy Sunday. It has no pretensions to being a great film. It’s just a good, well made, well acted family film.
If Only I Could Read FasterReviewed in the United Kingdom on 17 June 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
A nice movie but read the book too.
Verified purchase
I really like this movie, having read the book I was keen to see the film. While the book is obviously more true to life as it's written by the main character and also has a lot more detail, the film is a fun film and enjoyable to watch. My seven year old children liked it too, I think that as animal lovers they loved the idea of buying a zoo.
2 people found this helpful
Chris BoyceReviewed in the United Kingdom on 14 June 2015
3.0 out of 5 stars
likable enough, but confused as to what it's trying to be.
Verified purchase
Seems confused as to what it is, and who the audience is, and ends up as something of an extended American style inspiration speech on the struggles of being a lone father and holding families together, with a young 'lurve' side-arc tacked on for good measure. The zoo aspect is, for the most part, incidental, and in some cases wasted, particularly the story of Spar, and no real zoo staff that I've met would come to the conclusions those in the film do. There are some very caricature-ish characters - the ones used for comic effect. That said, it's certainly watchable and while not inspirational, is uplifting.
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