...heartwarming holiday fare that even jaded adults can share with the kids.
—Lou Lumenick New York Post
...the whole look and feel is warm, and sure, a bit overly sentimental. But the strong performances and [director] Crowe's deft touch keep you invested, even if those that oppose the zoo will induce much rolling of the eyes.
—Peter Paras E!
We Bought a Zoo has its charms. It also has a lot to live up to - and misses the mark.
—Bill Gibron filmcritic.com
Pap, but easygoing pap with a cast you can live with for a couple of hours...
—Michael Phillips Chicago Tribune
...too much formula and not enough human interest.
—Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times
Clichés and contrivances and corniness, oh my!
—Nick Schager Slant Magazine