Director: Niki Caro
Writers: Diane Ackerman (Book),
Angela Workman (Screenplay). Rated: PG-13.
Runtime: 124 minutes
Release Date: 31st March 2017
Genres: Biography, Drama, History, War
Reviewer: Nicholas Opolot
This cheesy movie makes the perfect weekend getaway for those that really want to spend a quiet and comfortable time at home.
Based on a true life event and set in the World War II era, Antonina and Jan Zabinski are your average married couple.
Together, they passionately manage a zoo in the middle of nowhere in Warsaw, Poland. For a while, the animal sanctuary looks ideal and magical as we get to see her son sleep soundly with adorable lion cubs.
She even goes ahead to muse that she loves and trusts animals so much that ‘you can look into their eyes and you know exactly what’s in their hearts’.
This fairytale is short-lived when bombs start dropping, owing to the German invasion of Poland and her beloved city besieged.
Things change overnight, including the management of the zoo which falls under the ruthless of Nazi zoologist, Lutz Heck (Daniel Bruhl) who ships off the prized animals and shoots dead the undesirable ones as he develops an unhealthy interest in Antonina.
However, she becomes the true heroine who smuggles in over 300 persecuted Jews into the basement of her zoo, sparking off a trail of events.
Indeed the movie easily wins the hearts of enthusiasts for its depiction of the Nazi holocaust with a compassionate feminine touch, aided by Antonina’s (Jessica Chastain) powerful art of acting that perfectly intertwines with the movie script.