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Maya the Bee Movie (2014)

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Maya is a little bee with a big heart! Join her on an epic adventure.

Director:

Alexs Stadermann

Writers:

Waldemar Bonsels (characters), Fin Edquist | 4 more credits »
1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Kodi Smit-McPhee ... Willy (English version) (voice)
Noah Taylor ... Crawley (English version) (voice)
Jacki Weaver ... Buzzlina Von Beena (English version) (voice)
Richard Roxburgh ... Flip (English version) (voice)
Miriam Margolyes ... The Queen (voice)
Andy McPhee ... Hank (English version) (voice)
Justine Clarke ... Miss Cassandra (English version) (voice)
Coco Jack Gillies ... Maya (English version) (voice)
Heather Mitchell Heather Mitchell ... Thekla the Spider / Nurse (voice)
David Collins ... Arnie (English version) (voice)
Cosma Shiva Hagen ... Frau Kassandra (German version) (voice)
Shane Dundas ... Barney (English version) (voice)
Nina Hagen ... Gunilla (German version) (voice)
Fin Edquist Fin Edquist ... Additional Voices (voice)
Constantin von Jascheroff Constantin von Jascheroff ... Eddy (German version) (voice)
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Storyline

Freshly hatched bee Maya is a little whirlwind and won't follow the rules of the hive. One of these rules is not to trust the hornets that live beyond the meadow. When the Royal Jelly is stolen, the hornets are suspected and Maya is thought to be their accomplice. No one believes that she is the innocent victim and no one will stand by her except for her good-natured and best friend Willy. After a long and eventful journey to the hornets hive Maya and Willy soon discover the true culprit and the two friends finally bond with the other residents of the opulent meadow. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

australian fantasy | See All (1) »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Australia | Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 March 2015 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Abelha Maia - O Filme See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first version of this story was made in 1925 with its writer, Waldemar Bonsels assisting the production. Produced in Germany and released under the title, "Die Biene Maja und ihre Abenteuer" and released in Britain as "The Adventures of Maya". It used micro-photography of real insects to tell the story. The last remaining nitrate 35mm print of the British version is owned by a Scottish archive who made a super 8mm reprint in 2000. See more »

Goofs

When Flip is introduced to Maya and it cuts to the scene in which he shows Maya the meadow, his antennae are missing. In the next scene they are back again. See more »

Quotes

Willy: Maya, not so fast! I forgot to tell you the most important bee saying of all: "You should always wait for Willy!"
See more »

Connections

Version of Maya the Bee (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

Here Comes Maya the Bee
Written by Johan Vanden Eede, Gert Verthulst and Hans Bourlon
Performed by Myra Maud
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Perfect if you're 5 years-old and have a tiny attention span.
20 April 2015 | by Sergeant_TibbsSee all my reviews

It's hard for an small animation studio to compete with the likes of Disney, Pixar, Dreamworks, Universal and Warner Bros. You can either give your best shot at CG or go back to basics and try to impress with 2D or stop-motion. Director Alexs Stadermann, Studio 100 Animation and Buzz Studios chose the former. Based on a 78-episode TV series they released in 2012, the film's budget is spread between countless characters and locations rather than cinematic detail to make it burst on the big screen. This is cookie cutter stuff. At least it's not bad choice for material, 100 year-old German literature figure Maya the Bee is well known and highly regarded – admittedly not to me until recently – but put to film it invites endless comparisons to the other CG bug movies such as A Bug's Life, Bee Movie, Antz and so on. This is familiar territory, and it's dead territory by now. Though in hindsight, these films were most likely inspired by the original Maya the Bee.

So, we have a precocious little bee called Maya exploring her hive and the outside world for the first time with inquisitive gleeful wonder. Unfortunately, this hive is a totalitarian society of militaristic conformism. Of course, Maya is the antithesis of them and the chosen one to ultimately change the attitudes of everyone simultaneously. Meanwhile, The Queen's adviser is trying to take over the throne by starving the Queen while sparking a turf war between a generations long conflict with bees and hornets. Also Maya befriends another bee eager to make friends and overcome his nerves, and they stumble upon a young hornet who has yet to learn his prejudices through propaganda. Then there are parties in the forest with other insects where they sing a random song about belonging lead by Maya the Bee's own Jiminy Cricket because why not at this point?

It's bloated with subplots and relentless introductions of new characters. It's not difficult to follow, and to writer's credit that despite the very liberal contrivances in the progressions, the story, themes and characters arcs flow fine if simply. The film is just an overload of clichés at a relentless pace. Every peril seems to last 15 seconds before it's overcome and we jump to the next plot line. It covers every cliché in the book without an original thought or personality of its own. All the comedy comes from dopey characters being dopey – or abysmal puns. While the stories do mesh together eventually, none of them have any impact or involvement. They could have benefited with some trimming and focusing. Perhaps The Fox and the Hound-esque one where the young Hornet and Maya learn hate is only taught would have been the most interesting and thoughtful to follow.

At least it is a film – outside of that musical number – that takes itself seriously. But maybe that's too seriously for its target market. Unfortunately, there's no atmosphere in the animation. Yes, bug worlds give a good space for simple shapes and movements to animate. Photorealistic textures aren't 100% essential, A Bug's Life didn't try for it outside of landscapes, but Maya the Bee is so sterile. It's the quality of a video game cut scene – from 10 years ago. Characters talk like they're chewing on tough steak. The voice acting from notable stars such as Kodi Smit-McPhee, Jacki Weaver and Noah Taylor are serviceable and they're definitely just names just to draw attention to the project. You wouldn't know it was them if you hadn't read the credits on the box. Kids will enjoy it and it'll keep their attention for all of its 80 minutes, if not be anything memorable. The brisk pace will make it an easy tune-out viewing for parents inflicted by the film, but most likely Maya the Bee will play better put back on television."

5/10

Read more @ The Awards Circuit (http://www.awardscircuit.com/)


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