Friday, October 7, 2022


July 8, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

The MGM lion is the first animal audiences see in Zookeeper. It’s real. The others in the movie are computer generated and they talk, in the voices of Nick Nolte, Sylvester Stallone, Cher, Don Rickles and Adam Sandler. All of them give the character portrayed by Kevin James advice about love. Lou Lumenick gives the movie a single star in his review in the New York Post. “Zookeeper barely avoids a zero-star rating because of James,” he writes. “The bulky former star of King of Queens is impossible to hate no matter how much dumb slapstick he and his stunt double are required to perform.” James manages to come off relatively unscathed in otherwise scathing reviews for the movie. “It’s the always-game everyman Kevin James who brings the only sense of humanity to what is otherwise a dumb Dr. Doolittle ripoff with creepily fake-looking talking animals,” writes Linda Barnard in the Toronto Star. Sean O’Connell in the Washington Post notes that James is “at his best when his enormous heart and innate vulnerability shine through the slapstick antics screenwriters love to throw at him, which happens to be the case in Frank Coraci’s Zookeeper.” David Hilbrand in the Philadelphia Inquirer finds absolutely nothing and no one to like in this movie. “If you’ve been waiting for Hollywood to produce a romantic comedy with a supporting cast made up of talking animals . . . well, no, even then, Zookeeper will let you down,” he warns. On the other hand, Roger Ebert in the Chicago Sun-Times suggests this just isn’t the movie to get worked up over. “Look, a great movie this is not,” he comments. “A pleasant summer entertainment it is.”