Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Zookeeper's Wife Movie Review

Jessica Chastain stars in The Zookeeper's Wife

This Is Warsaw Calling

Rotten Tomatoes Plot: The real-life story of one working wife and mother who became a hero to hundreds during World War II. In 1939 Poland, Antonina Żabińska (portrayed by two-time Academy Award nominee Jessica Chastain) and her husband, Dr. Jan Żabiński (Johan Heldenbergh of "The Broken Circle Breakdown"), have the Warsaw Zoo flourishing under his stewardship and her care. When their country is invaded by the Germans, Jan and Antonina are stunned - and forced to report to the Reich's newly appointed chief zoologist, Lutz Heck (Daniel Brühl of "Captain America: Civil War"). To fight back on their own terms, Antonina and Jan covertly begin working with the Resistance - and put into action plans to save lives out of what has become the Warsaw Ghetto, with Antonina putting herself and even her children at great risk. Directed by Niki Caro.

It's been nearly 25 years since Schindler's List established itself as the quintessential Holocaust movie. Others have followed, some with great success; but almost all of them possess a unique twistThe Zookeeper's Wife has one... A Polish zoo that doubles as a secret hiding place for Jews during WWII. Trouble is, it let's go of it way too early. It's still captivating; but we've seen this story countless times before. Parts of it are questionable (clueless Nazis, hiding in plain sight) and it's 30 minutes too long; but Chastain delivers a memorable performance, chock-full of soft-spoken resilience and strength.

Grade: B-