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Akeelah and the Bee (2006)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  28 April 2006 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 14,070 users   Metascore: 72/100
Reviews: 169 user | 94 critic | 30 from Metacritic.com

A young girl from South Los Angeles tries to make it to the National Spelling Bee.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Javier (as JR Villarreal)
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Georgia (as Sahara Garey)
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Steve (as Jeris Lee Poindexter)
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Storyline

Eleven year-old Akeelah Anderson's life is not easy: her father is dead, her mom ignores her, her brother runs with the local gangbangers. She's smart, but her environment threatens to strangle her aspirations. Responding to a threat by her school's principal, Akeelah participates in a spelling bee to avoid detention for her many absences. Much to her surprise and embarrassment, she wins. Her principal asks her to seek coaching from an English professor named Dr. Larabee for the more prestigious regional bee. As the possibility of making it all the way to the Scripps National Spelling Bee looms, Akeelah could provide her community with someone to rally around and be proud of -- but only if she can overcome her insecurities and her distracting home life. She also must get past Dr. Larabee's demons, and a field of more experienced and privileged fellow spellers. Written by Shannon Patrick Sullivan <shannon@mun.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Changing the world... one word at a time.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 April 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A som i Akeelah  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$6,011,585 (USA) (28 April 2006)

Gross:

$18,811,135 (USA) (14 July 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The filmmakers initially considered Sidney Poitier to play Dr. Larabee before deciding they wanted someone younger, and then selected Laurence Fishburne. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the film, they state that Akeelah is 11 years old. At the end of the film, even though clearly a whole year has passed, her age is still mentioned to be 11. See more »

Quotes

Katie Kerwin McCrimmon: [commentating on TV] Several of the kids placed very high in last year's bee, especially Dylan Chiu. He's come in second two years in a row.
Derrick-T: Kick his butt, Akeelah! B-U-T-T, butt!
See more »

Connections

References Shazam! (1974) See more »

Soundtracks

Let Your Baby Go
Written by Jamey Jazz (as Jamey Jaz) and Rhona Bennett
Performed by 'Erica Rivera'
Courtesy of Music Line/Atlantic Recording Corporation
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A great, inspirational, feel-good movie
1 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The commercial made me smile. It made me think 'That looks like a good kids movie', but at the same time it made me think 'It kind of looks stupid...' Boy, I was wrong. Akeelah and the Bee is an inspirational movie, and is definitely great for those who share an interest in spelling bees.

I went to the movies with my friends for her birthday, expecting little about the bee at all and more about a love relationship between Akeelah and her newfound friend, Javier. Surprisingly enough, very little of the content was anything to do with romance, and thank goodness.

The acting, oh my goodness. It was wonderful. Especially Keke Palmer's performance. Her face told the story, really. Facial acting was wonderful, no doubt. Keke's performance perfectly matches up to her being as good as young Dakota Fanning, without her having to bawl out crying in any scenes. And the rest of the cast was great, too. The ending is very sweet, but I certainly won't spoil it for anyone.

Overall, a very inspirational movie. 10/10


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