The Zookeeper’s Wife (R) ★★★

Jessica Chastain stars in ‘The ZooKeeper’s Wife’ Photo Credit: Focus Features

The Zookeeper’s Wife is the true story of Antonina Żabińska a working wife and mother who became a hero to hundreds during World War II and based on the book of the same name by Diane Ackerman.

In 1939 Poland, Antonina Żabińska and her husband, Dr. Jan Żabiński, have made a name for themselves by creating a wonderful place for families to visit and a healthy place for animals to be cared for, the Warsaw Zoo. When Poland is invaded by the Germans, Jan and Antonina are suddenly forced to report to the Reich’s newly appointed chief zoologist, Lutz Heck played by Daniel Brühl. During the war, they helped save hundreds of people and animals.

The Bottom-Line? I appreciated the historical importance of this film and stellar acting by the entire cast. I amazed to learn they saved over 300 people and so many animals.
Be warned; this is a war film similar to Schindler’s List and sugar coats nothing.

Cast: Jessica Chastain (Antonina Zabinski), Johan Heldenbergh (Jan Zabinski), Daniel Brühl (Lutz Heck)

Credits: Directed by Niki Caro. Written by Angela Workman

Studio: Focus Features

Run Time: 2 hours 6 minutes