A heart-warming drama, Akeelah and the Bee is the story of Akeelah Anderson (Keke Palmer), a precocious eleven-year-old girl from south Los Angeles with a gift for words. Despite the objections of her mother Tanya (Angela Bassett), Akeelah enters various spelling contests, for which she is tutored by the forthright Dr. Larabee (Laurence Fishburne); her principal Mr. Welch (Curtis Armstrong) and the proud residents of her neighborhood. Akeelah's aptitude wins her a spot in the Scripps National Spelling Bee and in turn unites her neighborhood who witness the courage and inspiration of one amazing little girl.
Laurence Fishburne trades in his leather pants and samurai sword for a bow tie and a smart pair of slacks for a movie about spelling. Akeelah and the Bee takes the world of childrenís competitive spelling and pushes it to the big screen with a typical downtrodden kid succeeds against the odds story, and casts Fish as a spelling mentor.
The movie is directed by Doug Atchison, whose last movie was The Pornographer. Now heís directing little kids. Thereís an inappropriate joke in there somewhere, find it for yourself.
Akeelah and the Bee has a good cast. Angela Basset is in the mix there with Fishburne. But no matter how hard modern media outlets try to shove them down our throat (ESPN now covers spelling bees), thereís nothing interesting about kids spelling. Iím sorry. Iíd rather be forced to watch a movie about soccer. Publicize it all you want, make movies about it, glorify it. Itís still a movie about kids doing something that can be done better by just about any program sitting on my computer. Applying the tired old underdog sports success story to it wonít make more it interesting. Itís just spelling. No one is impressed.
More Akeelah and the Bee info from Cinema Blend News (BNN)
MPAA Rating: [ PG ]
Release Date: April 28, 2006
Starring: Sid Ganis, Nancy Ganis, Michael Romersa, Daniel Llewelyn and Laurence Fishburne
Directed by: Doug Atchison
Produced by: Sid Ganis, Nancy Ganis, Michael Romersa, Daniel Llewelyn, Laurence Fishburne
Written by: Doug Atchison
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