The Secret Life of Bees

Watch The Secret Life of Bees

"Bring Your Girlfriends, Sisters, Mothers and Daughters."
  • PG-13
  • 2008
  • 1 hr 50 min
  • 7.2  (27,737)
  • 57

The Secret Life of Bees is a 2008 film adaptation of the novel of the same name written by Sue Monk Kidd. Starring Dakota Fanning, Jennifer Hudson, Queen Latifah, and Alicia Keys, the film tells the story of a young girl fleeing her abusive father and finding a new family in the form of a group of beekeeping sisters in South Carolina in 1964.

The film opens with 14-year-old Lily Owens (Dakota Fanning) and her African-American housekeeper Rosaleen (Jennifer Hudson) traveling to Tiburon, South Carolina, to escape Lily's abusive father and to register Rosaleen to vote. Along the way, they encounter racism and violence that lead to Rosaleen's arrest and hospitalization. Despite the danger, Lily breaks Rosaleen out of the hospital and together they seek refuge in a nearby town.

They end up on the doorstep of the Boatwright sisters, August (Queen Latifah), June (Alicia Keys), and May (Sophie Okonedo), who are beekeepers and makers of Black Madonna honey. August invites them to stay in their honey house and work for them in exchange for a place to stay. Lily becomes fascinated by the world of bees and seeks solace in their care.

As Lily begins to learn about the sisters' culture and beliefs, she becomes increasingly drawn to August and her wisdom. August teaches her about the importance of forgiveness and encourages her to confront her past. June, on the other hand, is wary of their presence and resents Lily's intrusion into their lives.

As the summer progresses, Lily becomes more and more attached to the family and struggles with her desire to stay with them versus her longing to find out more about her mother, who died when she was a child. She discovers a picture of her mother with August and is forced to confront the truth about her family's past and the role the Boatwright sisters played in it.

The Secret Life of Bees is a poignant coming-of-age story that explores the themes of family, forgiveness, and race relations in the South during the Civil Rights era. The film's strong performances, particularly by Fanning and Queen Latifah, bring depth and emotional resonance to the characters. The stunning visuals of the bees and their honey-making process infuse the film with a sense of magic and wonder that mirrors Lily's own journey of self-discovery.

Overall, The Secret Life of Bees is a powerful and moving film that will appeal to those who appreciate character-driven stories and a strong sense of place and historical context. It is a well-crafted adaptation of an acclaimed novel that will leave viewers feeling uplifted and inspired.

The Secret Life of Bees is a 2008 kids & family movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 50 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2 and a MetaScore of 57.

The Secret Life of Bees
Where to Watch The Secret Life of Bees
The Secret Life of Bees is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Hulu, The Roku Channel, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Secret Life of Bees for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 50 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.2  (27,737)
  • Metascore