Animal Time at the Movies

Cute humans + cute animals = “We Bought a Zoo”

We finished up our annual holiday moviegoing with animal films, which were very enjoyable. The entire family saw “We Bought a Zoo,” which was based on a true story.

Benjamin (Matt Damon) encourages Spar the ailing tiger.

Hunky Matt Damon stars as Benjamin Mee, who purchased a small, struggling zoo to try to help heal his adorable kids after their mom died. It’s a heartwarming story that is guaranteed to melt your heart. My older son didn’t want to see it, but even he had to admit that it was worthwhile.

This is my favorite line in the movie, spoken by the dad (Benjamin) to his son Dylan (Colin Ford): “You know, sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage. Just literally twenty seconds of just embarrassing bravery. And I promise you, something great will come of it.”

I plan to repeat that advice often to my own sons . . . and remember it for myself.

“War Horse”

Joey is looking at you!

Want to experience World War I from the viewpoint of an animal? Then “War Horse” is the movie for you.

Albert shares a bond with Joey.

Steven Spielberg’s epic production stars Joey, a horse raised by young Albert (well-played by Jeremy Irvine). Albert’s father (Peter Mullan) sells Joey to the British cavalry at the start of World War I, and that begins the thoroughbred’s adventure abroad. Eventually, Albert is old enough to go to war, and his journey richly adds to the story.

“War Horse” is a thrilling, moving tale that will have you worried for Joey (especially when he becomes trapped in barbed wire in no man’s land between the British and German trenches) as well as Albert.

Don’t forget to bring your Kleenex!

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