7.4/10
16,758
173 user 94 critic

Akeelah and the Bee (2006)

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

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
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 »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama

True story of two fathers' journey from murder to forgiveness. One Iranian and Muslim, the other Black and Christian. Their lives intertwine when one's 14 year-old grandson murders the ... See full summary »

Director: Doug Atchison
Short | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Stars: Keke Palmer, Quavo
Short | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Stars: Keke Palmer
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Robert Townsend stars as the patriarch of a family devastated when his wife is killed in a senseless auto accident. Reeling with grief, each family member must find courage and vision to carry on, ultimately eager to do the mother proud.

Director: Carl Seaton
Stars: Robert Townsend, Angela Bassett, Victoria Rowell
Spelling Bee (TV Special 2005)
Game-Show
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Sue McMahon
Stars: Chris Tarrant, Roger Black, Samantha Bond
Edit

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 ... 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
Edit

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:

View content advisory »
Edit

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 »

Edit

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 »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The quote that Dr. Larabee has Akeelah read from a plaque on his wall is an excerpt from "A Return To Love: Reflections on the Principles of a Course in Miracles" by Marianne Williamson. See more »

Goofs

When Crenshaw Middle School celebrates Akeelah's placing third in the regional bee,an enlargement of an article about Akeelah from a local paper is shown in the background. Zooming in, you can see that the names of the school principal and Akeelah's chief rival do not match their names in the film. The principal is "Bob" Welch, according to the opening scene in the schoolyard; the article names him as "Marvin." Similarly, Dylan's surname is "Chiu" in the film, but in the article, his surname is an 8-letter name beginning with W or M. Clearly the article prop was made before the names of the characters were finalized. 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

Referenced in Zombie Apocalypse (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Anthrax Island
(2001)
Written by Mad Child (as S Bunting), Prevail (as K Hendriks), West Plischke (as W Plischke)
Performed by Swollen Members
Courtesy of Battle Axe Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Among the best, without a doubt
29 April 2006 | by sushiichiroSee all my reviews

Akeelah and the Bee is an excellent movie, and it deserves universal recognition for the unbelievably powerful message, storyline, and theme evident throughout. First of all, Starbucks's co-operation with Laurence Fishburne to produce the movie was a great move on everybody's part. And though many critics may say that Akeelah and the Bee was just another "inspirational film," lacking the originality and pungency necessary for good cinema, the people with such a belief just don't get it. Like Rudy (1993), Akeelah and the Bee is most certainly original in that the story is plausible, meaningful, and very emotional. The only real difference between the two films is that whereas Rudy is based on a true story, Akeelah and the Bee is completely fictional. Also, the fact that all of the real protagonists in the film are minorities brings an incredible new level to the silver screen. Very few recently released movies feature an African-American female--a youth, no less--in the role of the main character. And for viewers to see Akeelah--as well as her mother, her siblings, her best friend, her coach, and her other two spelling-bee companions: all of whom are minorities--achieve such great heights is most definitely "inspirational," and in the right sense. Even for the movie-viewer whose favorites are full of action, violence, and gore, Akeelah and the Bee strikes the heart directly. And for those who like the tear-jerkers, no better movie exists than this one. Without question, this film is one of the best I have seen in a long time, and many will agree that it is an exceptional piece of work. I would honestly be shocked if someone really believed in his or her mind that Akeelah and the Bee "was a waste of time."


52 of 67 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 173 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed