The Spirit of the Beehive (El Espíritu de la colmena)
The Spirit of the Beehive (El Espíritu de la colmena) (2006)

Eight-year-old Ana lives in a close-knit Castillian village with her daydreamer mother Teresa, older sister Isabel and father Fernando, who tends beehives for a living. After watching James Whale's 1931 version of Frankenstein with… More

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: January 27, 2006
DVD Release Date: September 19, 2006
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Critic Score: 100% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Sensitive, beautifully-wrought.

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Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press

Those who haven't seen it since the '70s may find themselves amazed all over again by its lyrical potency and grace; those who have never seen it may wonder how it can be that a film this great isn't shown somewhere all the time.

Jaime Pena
Caimán Cuadernos de Cine

... is not a form of evasion, but a form of knowledge, an abrupt and precocious learning about the mysteries of life. [Full review in Spanish]

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Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune

It's a film that transports us back not just to the sights and sounds of childhood but to a core of sweet innocence and sometimes ignorant bliss.

Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times

Screening in a new print so pristine you forget that this film is 33 years old, Spirit of the Beehive sweeps you into its quiet world.

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Dorothy Woodend
The Tyee (British Columbia)

There is another world that underlies this one: a world of darkness, silence, open space and enormous forces moving in the distance.

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Wesley Morris
Boston Globe

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.

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A.O. Scott
New York Times

Takes place at the particular intersection of reality and fantasy defined by youthful moviegoing.

Emanuel Levy

Lyrical and magestic, Erice's film is one of the most compelling fables about haunted childhood.

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Flixster Audience Score: 90% Flixster User Reviews
Bob Stinson
If only they had better monster makeup. I jest - wonderful film.
Drew Smith
A young person learning about death is universal, but here in Spirit of the Beehive it's filtered into a very specific situation: a girl coming to grips… More
Carlos Magalhăes
A brilliant and spellbinding sociopolitical commentary told in a most symbolic way (and with a gorgeous cinematography) as a fabulous tale of loss of innocence… More
Jan Marc Macababayao
Symbolically critical of post-civil war Spain, The Spirit Of The Beehive is a Victor Erice work that features young Ana and her curiosity. Gorgeous… More
Greg S
After seeing a touring print of FRANKENSTEIN in 1940s Spain, a young girl is convinced the monster is real and lives in an abandoned farmhouse on the edge of… More
Michael S
Slow and somber film with gorgeous cinematography and one of the most captivating performances by a child I've ever seen (Ana Torrent). "The Spirit of… More