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Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Literature > Teens > The Bumblebee Flies Anyway (1999/Umbrella Entertainment DVD/Region Zero/0/PAL Format)

The Bumblebee Flies Anyway (1999/Umbrella Entertainment DVD/Region Zero/0/PAL Format)


Picture: C+     Sound: C     Extras: C-     Film: C+



PLEASE NOTE: This DVD can only be operated on machines capable of playing back DVDs that can handle Region Zero/0/PAL format software, and can be ordered from our friends at Umbrella Entertainment at the website address provided at the end of the review.



A few years before leaving his permanent mark on film with his work in The Lord Of The Rings films, Elijah Wood was making mostly independent films with occasional dabblings in higher profile releases.  Now that he is one of the more well-known actors of his generation, there will be curiosity for almost anything he does and hits like Sin City do not hurt.  Director Martin Duffy’s The Bumblebee Flies Anyway (1999) is a decent adaptation of the Robert Cormier novel that is about on part with I Am The Cheese, but no match for The Chocolate War.


With an adaptive screenplay by Jennifer Sarja, Wood plays a young man who has been in a car accident and can barely remember anything, thanks to some serious amnesia that is causing havoc with the flashbacks he is experiencing.  He wakes up at an institute for terminally ill patients and though he is not one of them, there is a procedure that would stop the flashbacks, but would likely cause total memory loss.


As he deals with that, he meets the various child patients there and the main doctor on his case (Janeane Garofalo) is doing her sincere best to help out.  There is also his interest in a local young lady (Rachel Leigh Cook in one of her best early roles) and general issues with integrating into society.  Though not a biog hit in its time, with mixed reviews to boot, it is actually not bad overall and the performances help where the directing and script have lulls.  If interested, you’ll probably like it.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image is not bad for a resent film, yet could be a bit clearer, more detailed and have some more depth.  Still it is consistent and Director of Photography Stephan Kazmierski does a decent job lensing the whole thing.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo is transferred too low and is difficult to hear at times throughout for whatever reason, despite being a Dolby release.  Until I hear another version, it will be uncertain as to whether it is the original sound master or this disc, but it can be trying.  Extras only include a trailer for this and a few other Umbrella DVD releases.


As noted above, you can order this import exclusively from Umbrella at:





-   Nicholas Sheffo


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