We Bought A Zoo (2011)

My Sneak Peek at Crowe’s Perfect Holiday Gift: WE BOUGHT A ZOO

The other night I caught writer/director Cameron Crowe on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, promoting his new documentary, Pearl Jam 20.  If you’re a Pearl Jam fan (and even if you’re not), I don’t think you want to miss it.  It’s incredible!

I also found out about his latest movie, We Bought a Zoo, and snapped up tickets to an early screening.

In case you haven’t followed the Academy Award winner’s work too closely, he’s a 3-time nominee: Best Screenplay and Best Picture in 1997 for Jerry Maguire, and again, Best Screenplay in 2001 for Almost Famous, which landed him the Oscar.

Along the way, Crowe has given us some of the most memorable one-liners in recent movie history — literally calling cards of modern American pop culture, that have become a permanent part of the lexicon.  If you don’t recognize these, you’ve probably missed out on some of the best movies of the last 30 years:

  • “Hey Bud, let’s party!”
    Spicoli (Sean Penn) — Fast Times at Ridgemont High 

  • “Rock stars have kidnapped my son.” 
    Elaine Miller (Frances McDormand) — Almost Famous

  • “I am a golden god!”
    Russell Hammond (Billy Crudup) — Almost Famous

  • “Show me the money!”
    Rod Tidwell (Cuba Gooding, Jr) — Jerry Maguire

  • “You complete me.”  
    Jerry Maguire (Tom Cruise) — Jerry Maguire

  • “You had me at hello.”
    Dorothy Boyd (Renee Zellweger) — Jerry Maguire

Now, in We Bought a Zoo, Crowe offers an addition to the list …“20 seconds of courage”.

No spoilers here, of course, but this is a GREAT movie.  And, don’t be misled into thinking this is  just another typical holiday-season storyline about a family that buys a zoo and has cuddly experiences with animals.  It’s really about life and death, connecting and letting go, pain and healing, families and the whole circle of life.  Go see it!

As I was leaving the theater, a crew was filming reactions from the audience and responses to Crowe’s “20 Seconds of Courage” Challenge.  You can watch mine here:


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