We Brought a Zoo

Another film based around true events. This story is based on Dartmoor Zoo in the UK and the Mee family who brought the zoo in 2006 in an attempt to refurbish and reopen it to the public.

Hollywood tends to have a history of taking true stories and twisting them for their own ends, ether to make the film more profitable or create a more interesting or marketable story for the American public. In the case of We Brought a Zoo this seems to be the case. They have changed a few key details such as location switching it to California and not mentioning the fact that originally the zoo was brought not just by Benjamin but one of his brothers their mother whose idea it was to begin with. If you start to change the details of a true story that story tends to suffer for it and you begin to lose its heart and soul.

Thankfully in this case it is still a watchable film but it does seem to suffer slightly the story arcs around the relationship between Benjamin Mee and His son as he struggles to come to terms with being a single father due to the death of his wife as well as the children dealing with the loss of their mother. So he decides to move house and look for somewhere quite in a country setting to start over. He finds the perfect house but with only one problem there is a slight catch it comes with a zoo attached and if he was to buy the property he will become legally responsible to care for the animals.

With a predictable story arc and no outstanding performances along with the tampering with the original story have had its effect on the film. I think there was a much more interesting story to tell here but they went in a different direction. Credit where it is due I have to say the director Cameron Crowe has done a good job still creating a reasonably enjoyable film. Matt Daemon and Scarlett Johanson performance are nothing special but it all comes together and it is quite enjoyable in the end and you are willing them to successes.

Overall I can not forgive the embellishments, changes and misrepresentations of the true story even if they are endorsed by the Mee family themselves I wanted to see the real story and that’s not what we got, although Cameron Crowe has created a heartwarming yet predictable story from this twisted truth. If you can forgive the embellishments or forget them entirely you will enjoy this film much more than I did.

 

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