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TIFF Kids Review: In the Midst of World War II Air Raids, Children and Adults Alike Will See the Meaning of Hope and Purpose in 'Zoo'

March 17, 2018Britany Murphy

It only takes a few moments for your world to get turned upside down, and this is exactly what happens during air raids in Belfast, Northern Ireland in 1941. But when Tom's father, the veterinarian at the local zoo, is sent to fight in the war, Tom attempts to keep any semblance of normalcy he can — even when that means saving a baby elephant from the zoo.

Conscripted to fight in the war, George Hall (Damian O'Hare) has to make a difficult sacrifice to fight with his countrymen, while leaving his family and the zoo behind. Dr. Hall tells his son, Tom (Art Parkinson), to keep watch over the animals in the zoo. This includes the zoo's newest addition, an elephant calf named Buster. But fearing any dangerous animals escaping their habitats during any air raids, the government orders for the animals to be destroyed.

Tom takes on the mission of a lifetime in an effort to save the little elephant, making some unlikely friends with a trio of town misfits along the way. Directed by Colin McIvor, Zoo is a film that shows us the tenacity of the human spirit, the willingness to help one another in times of need, and show us how both heart and hope can live, even within the darkest of times.

Zoo screens Tuesday, March 13th and Thursday, March 22nd as part of the TIFF Kids International Film Festival. Its runtime is 1 hr. 36 min.

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