The Spirit of the Beehive

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Released 1973

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Movie Summary

Director:
Victor Erice
Released:
1973
Rating:
R
The Spirit of the Beehive is the acclaimed 1973 Spanish drama from director Victor Erice. Two sisters, Ana and Isabel, attend a major event -- the showing of Whale's masterpiece of horror at a local theatre -- and for Ana, the key moment of horror where the little girl within the movie extends a flower to the Monster who will later throw her in the water, is a revelation that haunts her. Isabel toys with Ana's psyche, telling her stories that the monster lives within an abandoned outhouse near the village and that unless you know how to approach him, he will not show himself. From this moment on, the movie becomes drenched with a sense of unformed dread that has Ana delve deeper into this imaginary myth created by Isabel. In the meantime, Father (Fernando Fernan Gomez) works as a beekeeper, Mother (Teresa Gimpera) writes letters to an unknown (and unseen) lover, and another menace hovers over this family: that of the family's own dissolution.moreless

Metacritic Score

  • 90

    The New York Times Dana Stevens

    The Spirit of the Beehive, like "Cinema Paradiso," also takes place at the particular intersection of reality and fantasy defined by youthful moviegoing.

  • 90

    Village Voice Michael Atkinson

    Beehive is a graceful and potent lyric on children's vulnerable hunger, but it's also a sublime study on cinema's poetic capacity to reflect and hypercharge reality.

  • 88

    Boston Globe Wesley Morris

    This is a modest marvel of grace and framing that unfolds with the patience of a cloud and is driven more by wonder than pure emotion. It doesn't have the exuberance of Francois Tr...

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Categories

Drama

Themes

Foreign Language, Classics