Saturday, April 15, 2006
I don't know if Bee Season was a good book, but the movie is pretty mediocre. Bee Season is based on the book (with the same title) by Myla Goldberg.
I'm sure the movie left a lot of stuff out from the book, because that's typical, and this movie seemed to be hinting at characters and storylines that were greater than what the film was able to offer.
The movie deals with a family's multi-faceted problems that begin spiraling out of control at the same time the youngest member of the family discovers an amazing ability to spell and succeeds in many levels of the national spelling bee. The film stars Richard Gere, Juliette Binoche as the parents.
The young girl who plays the spelling-bee-daughter is phenomonal. The actresses name is Flora Cross and could easily play the daughter of Juliette Binoche in any movie, they look very similar.
Spiritual searching plays a large part in this film, in fact, I would say that's the motif of this film, particularly grounded in Richard Gere's knowledge and fascination with Jewish mysticism and the Kabbalah. I was curious about Goldberg's faith and was curious if there was a purposeful agenda she was pushing, and really, I don't think she was, especially after reading some of the interview here. Although Goldberg grew up in a Jewish household she learned about Jewish mysticism in a college course and had very little background in eastern religions (which play a role midway through the film).
This film is worth skipping unless you are highly curious about films that explore religious topics, or if you've got nothing better to do.
Interesting fact: The Screenplay, while not that great was written by Naomi Foner, the mother of Maggie and Jake Gyllenhaal.
Related Tags: Bee Season, Movie, Myla Goldberg, Spelling Bee, Jewish Mysticism, Kabbalah, Religion, Richard Gere, Juliette Binoche, Flora Cross, Family, Faith, Words, Adapted from a Book, Contemporary Literature, Naomi Foner