The Beekeeper Review
The Beekeeper (2024) Film Review, a movie directed by David Ayer, written by Kurt Wimmer and starring Jason Statham, Emmy Raver-Lampman, Bobby Naderi, Josh Hutcherson, Jeremy Irons, David Witts, Michael Epp, Taylor James, Phylicia Rashad, Jemma Redgrave, Minnie Driver, Don Gilet, Sophia Feliciano, Enzo Cilenti, Megan Le, Dan Li, Georgia Goodman and Derek Siow.
Director David Ayer’s new action picture, The Beekeeper, is sort of like 1994’s The Professional without the young girl in it. While the plots are different, the intensity of both pictures is at the max, and the star of the new movie, Jason Statham, takes no prisoners in both his character’s tenacity and audacity as well as in his on-screen performance. The film is in no way what I expected and the script by Kurt Wimmer is probably the wildest I’ve seen employed in an action picture in some time. This film doesn’t really have much character development but is saved by some intense action sequences that rank as some of the craziest ones seen in recent action movies.
Statham stars in the title role as Adam Clay, a beekeeper by trade. This film has very little to do with bees, though, in the literal sense. Instead, it focuses on a scam by a billion dollar company that hacks into people’s bank accounts by presenting its targets with a supposed computer virus. It’s hard to believe that people would give away their hard earned money to them but when you read the papers or online news, you see companies like this one exist in real life although probably not to the level of prosperity as the major company in this movie possesses. Still, it’s a great excuse to see Statham kick ass as he takes down the company one step at a time all in the name of vengeance.
Adam’s older friend, Eloise (a fine Phylicia Rashad), becomes the victim of the aforementioned scam that cleans out every single bank account on her computer. Eloise proceeds to kill herself due to the loss of the funds. Adam, at first, is suspected of possibly having something to do with her death. FBI Agent Verona Parker (Emmy Raver-Lampman) is also Eloise’s close family member so she has personal ties to the case. The plot thickens as Adam finds and burns down the offices associated with stealing Eloise’s cash, much of which was employed as charity money.
The cast is full of intriguing performances. Josh Hutcherson plays a real sleazeball in this film as Derek Danforth who is a wheeler and dealer who Adam ultimately confronts with crowd-pleasing results. Jeremy Irons as Wallace Westwyld, the man whose company is at the top of the scheming pyramid, delivers a short but pivotal role to the picture which is, of course, beneath the actor’s abilities but is nonetheless satisfying. If anyone is underused, though, it’s Minnie Driver as Director Janet Harward, a sort of blink-and-you’ll-miss-it role in a movie where Statham and Raver-Lampman’s characters sort of pursue each other in a cat-and-mouse game as Verona tries to take Adam in for not going by the book and trying to apprehend the criminals in a legal way. Adam goes rogue, AWOL, or whatever you want to call it, and audiences will enjoy the results. Jemma Redgrave is also noteworthy for her portrayal of President Danforth who is soon going to fall from grace if Adam has anything to say about it.
What keeps The Beekeeper afloat is its unpredictability, well for the first hour at least. I don’t pay attention to trailers all that much so I thought this was a movie about a guy who collected bees but the whole beekeeper job title is a just a front for Statham to take down the tech baddies the film features. Adam is a character who, of course, has an interesting history and there’s a reason he has the skillful abilities that he has. Statham turns in relentless work as the movie steers towards an ending which leaves the door open for a sequel in a big way.
As Verona, Raver-Lampman shines as the woman caught between doing the right thing and avenging Eloise’s death and following the code of the law which she has sworn to protect. The movie is full of scenes where Statham beats people up and Verona is sort of the voice of reason here even though the film will probably makes its viewers advocates of Statham’s character’s behavior in the picture.
While it’s hard to dislike The Beekeeper, it’s absurd much like The Professional was. Every action scene in the new movie attempts to be bigger and better than the last one but at the sacrifice of any real character development where Statham’s role is concerned. Ayer makes the movie a wild ride, though. Adam wants revenge and doesn’t change much as a character by the time the end credits roll. Viewers probably wouldn’t want it any other way.
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