7.4/10
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174 user 95 critic

Akeelah and the Bee (2006)

PG | | Drama, Family | 28 April 2006 (USA)
Trailer
2:45 | Trailer

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

Director:

Doug Atchison

Writer:

Doug Atchison
12 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Keke Palmer ... Akeelah
Laurence Fishburne ... Dr. Larabee
Angela Bassett ... Tanya
Curtis Armstrong ... Mr. Welch
J.R. Villarreal ... Javier (as JR Villarreal)
Sean Michael Afable ... Dylan
Sahara Ware Sahara Ware ... Georgia (as Sahara Garey)
Lee Thompson Young ... Devon
Julito McCullum ... Terrence
Erica Hubbard ... Kiana
Eddie Steeples ... Derrick-T
Dalia Phillips ... Ms. Cross
Tzi Ma ... Mr. Chiu
Jeris Poindexter ... Steve (as Jeris Lee Poindexter)
Sara Niemietz ... Polly
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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 | Family

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

28 April 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A som i Akeelah See more »

Filming Locations:

Berkeley, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,011,585, 30 April 2006, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$18,811,135, 16 July 2006
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Laurence Fishburne's character, Mr Larabee, is based on director Doug Atchison's teacher, Mr. Larabell. See more »

Goofs

Akeelah watches the Scripps National Spelling Bee on ESPN right before her school's event on April 14th. The Scripps event is held in late May or early June and ESPN usually does not broadcast old competitions. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Larabee: Where do you think big words come from?
Akeelah: People with big brains?
See more »

Connections

References The Powerpuff Girls (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Lester Hayes
(2004)
Written by Lateef Dumont (as L. Daumont) and Chief Xcel (as X. Mosley)
Performed by Lateef Dumont (as Lateef) & Chief Xcel (as The Chief)
Courtesy of Quannum Projects
By special arrangement with Bank Robber Music & Zync Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
I would compare it to 'The Karate Kid' meets 'Finding Forrester'.
10 March 2006 | by Movieguy_blogs_comSee all my reviews

In 'Akeelah and the Bee' Keke Palmer plays Akeelah Anderson, a bright 11 year old who just wants to fit in. Despite her intelligence, she is not a good student. She is unmotivated and often misses class. Since the death of her father five years ago, she only seems content when she imagines playing Scrabble with him. Nevertheless, her talent for spelling gives her an opportunity to shine.

This is on of the better movies I have seen this year. This heart-warming and inspirational story is about a girl who, despite all the hardships at home, finds a way to utilize her skill at Scrabble. With a little help from her coach (Laurence Fishburne) she not only learns a lot about language, but she learns how to appreciate the environment around her. She finds out that she is rich in ways she did not realize.

It is very difficult to find fault with this movie, there is something in it for everyone (even a few surprises). Both Angela Bassett and Laurence Fishburne are awesome. I was particularly impressed with Keke Palmer. I would compare it to 'The Karate Kid' meets 'Finding Forrester'.


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