My neighbors and I were fortunate to be able to attend a premier showing of the new movie The Secret Life of Bees, based on the novel by Sue Monk Kidd. It stars Queen Latifah, Dakota Fanning, Jennifer Hudson, Alicia Keys, and Sophie Okonedo, so yes, it's a chick flick. I usually don't do chick flicks, but I did like the book.
Set in South Carolina in 1964, the tale of Lily Owens (Fanning), a 14-year-old girl who is haunted by the memory of her late mother. To escape her lonely life and troubled relationship with her father, Lily flees with Rosaleen (Hudson), her caregiver and only friend, to a South Carolina town that holds the secret to her mother's past. The intelligent and independent honey-making Boatwright sisters take the two lost souls in, where Lily soon forms maternal bonds with each of the women. Lily finds solace in their mesmerizing world of beekeeping, honey and the Black Madonna.
I don't want to give too much away about the movie, but it does follow the book fairly closely. I would highly recommend it, as my neighbor's and I all give it 2 thumbs up. The movie will make you laugh...and cry...now I'm not a crier at movies, but both my neighbors are...oh my....they both went through a good bit of Kleenex. This movie is an emotional rollercoaster, so go along for the ride. The acting is wonderful, especially Queen Latifah as August Boatwright and Sophie Okonedo as May Boatwright. I could see some Oscar nominations coming out of this movie.
The Secret Life of Bees is rated PG-13 for language and violence. There is no sex or nudity, but I don't know if I want my 11 yr. old seeing the movie quite yet....probably in another year or so. Remember the language in 1964 is different than it is today, as is how black people were treated. I also want to say this does take place in the south...and some of what happens is not how I grew up in the north, but my neighbor Tracy remembers the south this way (she's one of a very few native Georgians I know).
The Secret Life of Bees will be out on October 17th. Go see it...it's worth the admission price.