The South Korean family comedy Secret Zoo Although it feels very “Western” overall, it doesn’t lose any of its warmth and humor. In our review we reveal why it is worth taking a look at one of the first newly announced cinema releases after the Corona crisis.
Special circumstances require special measures!
How fortunate that it is part of the strange concept of the rest of the zoo animals that, although at first glance (and from a distance) you could easily think that they are real lions, sloths, polar bears and giraffes, a second look is not enough It’s enough to make a viewer privy to the fraud ask oneself how this whole fake operation can go so well for so long. Tae-soo gives the reason for this very early in the film: Because no zoo visitor would expect not to see real animals. Various outstandingly funny moments are the result: For example, when a little visitor girl tells her disinterested mother that the animals are fakes, but that she pays no attention to her child’s statement. Or all the scenes in which the costumed people feel unobserved (the sloth, in particular, who is constantly typing on the smartphone, really tightens the absurdity screw). Some of the action sequences also come from animal slapstick in the truest sense of the word; However, a polar bear fight towards the end of the film might be a bit too exciting for very young viewers.
“A small spotlight also falls on the topic of animal protection, which otherwise remains in the background and which you only realize very late that the filmmakers are even aiming for a happy ending.”
Ahn Jae-hong, who is best known in his homeland for series, embodies the change in character that the main character Tae-soo undergoes from a cold-hearted lawyer to a zoo-loving zoo director (“Fight for my Way”) rock solid. The interaction with the rest of the highly committed ensemble is particularly convincing. Even through the costumes you can guess how much fun the actors had here. No wonder that this soon has to spread to the audience.
Conclusion: The South Korean family comedy “Secret Zoo” balances out its formulaic narrative concept with a good portion of absurdity, a lot of passion and apt punchlines. A good start to the post-Corona cinema year 2020!
“Secret Zoo” can be seen in USA cinemas from June 4th.