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Zookeeper (2011)

 -  Comedy | Family | Romance  -  8 July 2011 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.2/10 from 37,510 users   Metascore: 30/100
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A group of zoo animals decide to break their code of silence in order to help their lovable zoo keeper find love -- without opting to leave his current job for something more illustrious.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 5 more credits »
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Title: Zookeeper (2011)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Manny (as Nick Turturro)
Robin Bakay ...


A group of zoo animals decide to break their code of silence in order to help their lovable zoo keeper find love -- without opting to leave his current job for something more illustrious.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Welcome to his jungle. See more »


Comedy | Family | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some rude and suggestive humor, and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

8 July 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El guardián del zoológico  »

Box Office


$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$20,065,617 (USA) (8 July 2011)


$80,360,866 (USA) (21 October 2011)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Shipped to theaters under the code name "The Combo". See more »


When Shane is first seen throwing lettuce into Bernie the Gorilla's pen, a leaf lands right next to the bucket. In the shot immediately following from the other side, the lettuce leaf is gone without Shane having picked it up or thrown it in. See more »


Griffin Keyes: [about Kate leaving] Oh, man, it's my fault. I blew it.
Joe the Lion: No, it's my fault. I was the one who told you to be someone you're not.
Janet the Lioness: No, you know what? It's my fault. I was so worried you were gonna leave, I wasn't thinking about you.
Donald the Monkey: It's not my fault. I said throw poop at her. That always works.
See more »


Referenced in The Cinema Snob: I Spit on Your Grave: Part 1 (2013) See more »


Written by Ian Dench, James Atkin, Zachary Foley, Mark Decloedt and Derran Brownson
Performed by EMF
Courtesy of EMF Recordings
Master owned by EMF The Band
See more »

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User Reviews

Absolute drivel
9 July 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I have purposely tried to avoid Kevin James movies my entire life. That's mostly due to the fact that all of them have looked terrible and make being put in a guillotine look like a welcome form of relief after sitting through such atrocious garbage. But opportunity presented itself and Zookeeper would turn out to be the first Kevin James movie I actually had the displeasure of sitting through. Counter jabbing both my instinct and my gut, I sat there in my seat trying to convince myself that this poor excuse of a family movie might actually be some form of decent. Alas, it wasn't meant to be. Zookeeper is really horrendous no matter which way you look at it.

Just from the bits of "The King of Queens" that I've seen and the small pieces of random Kevin James movies I've been subjected to, it's easy to see that James doesn't have a lot of range on-screen. In fact, he pretty much plays the same character in everything and that continues in Zookeeper. He plays the dumb guy, who thinks he's funny, but isn't and spends the entire time falling down too many times and trying to get a girl that's way too hot for him. It's like he's trying to channel Chris Farley, but is failing miserably. Physical comedy has a time and a place, but when it's shoved down your throat it kind of loses what minimal appeal it had to begin with.

You pretty much know where the movie is going to go long before it actually takes place on screen, as well. Griffin's proposal at the beginning of the movie, his bond with the animals at the zoo, and what the animals are willing to risk to help Griffin. Who in their right mind would listen to woman advice from animals anyway? Then there's the whole main character trying to get back a girl he thought he loved when there's a better one sitting under his nose the entire time. There's also something about family movies these days that feel like they HAVE to include two specific things in them to make said movie appeal to the audience it's aiming at. Those two things are urine and a sing-a-long during the credits. This family movie formula needs to be shaken up. They could at least drop the urine since nobody seems to find that funny.

The cast is an interesting mix of talent and has-beens. Seeing Donnie Wahlberg was kind of surprising. The guy couldn't stand coming back for Saw IV, but willingly did something like this. I swear this is like the fourth really bad movie I've seen that Ken Jeong has been in. That guy gets around, but it'd be nice to see him in a project that didn't completely suck. Rosario Dawson was the most surprising though since she has some really fantastic stuff in her resume. She may have been the most enjoyable part of the cast, but still not so good overall. Then there are the animal voices which include the likes of Sylvester Stallone, Cher, Judd Apatow, Jon Favreau, Adam Sandler, and Nick Nolte. Nearly all of the animal voices get really annoying really fast; especially Molly the Giraffe and Donald the Monkey. Just imagine Maya Rudolph doing a bad Stitch (from Lilo & Stitch) impression and Adam Sandler doing a bad Al Pacino impression and you've pretty much got the idea of what to expect from that.

It seems like whenever a movie studio comes along and decides to make a live action movie with talking animals it never looks right. Animals talking in Zookeeper looks pretty bad at all times. Certain animals look decent every so often, but you can usually tell it's just a CG cartoon mouth pasted over the digitally removed original mouth of the animal. This is the most noticeable with Donald the Monkey. Bernie the Gorilla seems to be the one animal that used practical effects to be animated and it just looks like somebody in an ape suit with superior puppeteering skills. It's probably about time Hollywood gave up on talking animal family movies. The only time it seems to look right is when the talking animal(s) have a supporting role rather than a main attraction.

Zookeeper is leaps and bounds the worst movie I've sat through in 2011. It is 2011's version of Furry Vengeance, which is no compliment. Kevin James plays the same character yet again while abusing physical comedy and the predictable storyline and unnerving animal voices will make you grind your teeth together in disgust. Zookeeper is the furthest thing from funny or entertaining and is about as enjoyable as a bowl of hot diarrhea soup.

58 of 113 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Recent Posts
Ebert gave it 3/4 elevengood92
Wow, Kevin James is really bad in this movie. genelee-3
Ignore the haters. wolfgangr5150-133-602499
Song help please ginlover92545
Looks like a really long TGIF commercial cheffy1975
I missed something Mickyfinn
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