Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
Damon is extraordinary. He's heartfelt performance has a tough core of intelligence and wit.
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San Francisco Chronicle

By Amy Biancolli
The film is sweet. Its observations of life in the aftermath of death ring true, especially for anyone who's traveled the contours of mourning. And although it doesn't rank among Crowe's greatest films, it's a better, tighter, more disarming piece of grief work than his baggy and zigzaggy "Elizabethtown."
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Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
The movie is like Doctor Dolittle remade as a therapeutic sudser. By the end, it got to me.
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The Hollywood Reporter

Arguably the director's least typical film, it doesn't dodge the potholes of earnest sentimentality and at times overplays the whimsy. But the uplifting tale has heart, humanity and a warmly empathetic central performance from Matt Damon.
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Philadelphia Inquirer

By Carrie Rickey
Often I couldn't see the character for the metaphors.
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USA Today

By Claudia Puig
We Bought a Zoo doesn't seem to know what kind of animal it is. Is it a family melodrama, a love story, a wacky comedy, a drama about coping with grief, a feel-good film about following your dreams, or, as ads seem to indicate, a gift-wrapped animal adventure? Not surprisingly, this menagerie of genres doesn't mesh.
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Wall Street Journal

By Joe Morgenstern
A movie you want to like, and a movie you can enjoy if you cut its slackness some slack.
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The film has the feel of something deeply conventional that Crowe, who's also credited as a screenwriter, has tried with very mixed success to punch up with personality.
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Boston Globe

By Ty Burr
A sweet-natured, terribly unthreatening drama about redemption and renewal, and it may matter more to the man who made it than the audiences who see it.
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New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
"Field of Dreams" this ain't, and Crowe, whose "Jerry Maguire" and "Almost Famous" are justly held in high esteem, can't build the right frame here. It's neither fish nor fowl; a "guy-gets-his-life-right" rom-com runs smack into a "kids-with-animals" lark.
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58 out of 100
Mixed or average reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.