Petting Zoo

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    Petting Zoo

    Directed by



    90 min

    • English


    Karlovy Vary IFFSeville IFFCPH PIX

    A story of love, sex and teen pregnancy in San Antonio, Texas. "Petting Zoo" is an independent feature film about a young woman coming into her own, in an environment that does not always present ideal circumstances.


    Show All Awards Show Less Awards
    • Emerging Filmmaker Award for Script - Studio Hamburg
    • Best Actress (Devon Keller) - Thessaloniki IFF
    • Best Actress (Devon Keller) - Angers FF
    • Best Narrative Feature, Best of Show - Bend IFF
    • Best European Director – Münster IFF
    • Emerging Filmmaker Award for Script – Studio Hamburg
    • Audience Award – Pesaro IFF
    • Perspective of Young Cinema – Five Seas IFF



    Devon Keller
    Kiowa Tucker
    Deztiny Gonzales
    Austin Reed
    Micah Magee
    Armin Dierolf

    Director's Statement

    PETTING ZOO has been made in the places of my childhood, where my teenage cousins are now: high schools built by prison architects, trailers, rock bars, abandoned half-built subdivisions, the corporate parks between the fields. Woven through the film are the following important elements: This feeling when you wake up that you are not sure if you are forgetting who you really are, maybe you are really more real someplace else and you are forgetting the most important thing. What is that most important thing? Something is slipping away from you. It is a bothersome feeling. Especially combined with the feeling that life is hurtling you through time and space in a direction you aren't sure you want to be going. The difference from feeling like you have ambition in life and suddenly feeling like it doesn't matter; you're stuck where you are. Giving in to the surroundings. Cultural inheritance. Body: sex doesn't matter, friendship does. As a teenage girl sometimes you have sex before it means anything to you. Your body is just beginning to be yours. As a pregnant teenager your body changes all over again. At the same time: sex does matter. As a teenager you're totally obsessed with sex. It's all around you. You don't know what it is.



    a fine lead performance from Devon Keller.

    Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter

    ... a piercingly authentic, diamond-in-the-rough debut.

    Peter Debruge, Variety

    Gritty without being sensationalistic, a moving debut from a strong talent.

    Amy Gentry, Austin Chronicle

    a modern masterpiece

    Larry Oliver , Bitlanders

    Micah Magee

    Micah Magee


    Filmmaking is a lot like writing, and it just happens to be how I write best.

    Micah Magee grew up in San Antonio, Texas. Active in pirate radio and print journalism, Micah took a Fulbright journalism fellowship from Texas to Berlin in 2001, where she stayed to study film directing at the DFFB. Her first feature, "Petting Zoo", produced with the support of the NYFA, NYSCA, Medienboard and The Austin Film Society, premiered at the Berlinale in 2015 and won several awards. Previous shorts were awarded by Oberhausen, Premiers Plans d’Angers and the German Film Academy (Short Film Lola in Gold). Micah lives with her three children and husband, filmmaker Johan Carlsen, with whom she founded directors' co-op and production company Makrorama.