Jason Statham as Adam Clay and Jeremy Irons as Wallace Westwyld (L-R) in director David Ayer’s “The Beekeeper” (Photo Credit: Daniel Smith/2024 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures, Inc.).

(“The Beekeeper” trailer courtesy of MGM)

Romans 12: 19 reads, “Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord.”

Well, in The Beekeeper 1:1, Adam Clay says it is O.K. to avenge a loved-one because vengeance belongs to the beekeeper.

As a result, “The Beekeeper” becomes a vicious wakeup call for those who prey on the vulnerable and weak with scams and hustles.

In “The Beekeeper,” Adam Clay (Jason Statham) and Eloise Parker (Phylicia Rashad) have developed a mother-son bond.

Sure, Eloise has a daughter Agent Verona Parker (Emmy Raver-Lampan) who works for the FBI’s office in Boston.

But Adam still sees her like a mother figure because she is the only person that has ever taken care of him.

Adam has solved some problems with bees for Eloise.

And in turn Eloise has taken care of some business in the kitchen, often cooking supper for her beekeeper.

With her daughter in another city and her spending her retirement alone, Eloise has enjoyed the company that Adam provides.

Unfortunately, Adam has completely solved Eloise’s bee problem and will soon be on his way.

But Eloise still wants to cook one last supper for him before he leaves.

While Adam is finishing up for the last time in Eloise’s barn, the retired educator gets a flashing message on her computer screen, which alerts her to some viruses and malware that might wipe her computer clean if it is not taken care of.

Thankfully, if Eloise calls the telephone number that flashes on the screen, the tech support can help solve her computer problems, which would in turn save all her precious family memories that are stored on her computer.

Not being too computer literate or tech savvy, Eloise calls the tech support number so that they can coach her through the process of removing the malware on her device.

However, after she goes into her bank account to correct a mistake made on the part of the tech company, changing her password in the process, she devastatingly finds that all her bank accounts have gotten wiped clean.

In one account in which Eloise was running for a charity, she had access to over $2 million.

And in an instant, after one innocent phone call to correct a computer problem, all her retirement and life savings are gone.

Although it might be easy just to let her daughter Verona investigate what happened, Adam has no interest in letting the law work itself out.

A beekeeper’s job is to protect the hive.

And because of her motherly love and affection, Eloise has become a part of Adam’s hive.

Therefore, Adam defends Eloise like he would defend his own mother and those that attempt to stand in the way of his vengeance world tour might have hell to pay for going against the beekeeper.

But when Adam realizes the scam goes much higher than just another ordinary Internet hustle, he finally might have his work cut out for him.

In “The Beekeeper,” Statham is his usual gangster self.

The key to true gangsterism is a calm demeanor.

Many non-gangsters believe that gangsterism is loud, boastful and attention-seeking.

But true gangsters often move in silence.

And when they do speak, it is never truly in a threatening way.

Their words are more of a promise that whatever they say will happen will ultimately come to pass.

In “The Beekeeper,” when Adam tells security guards at an office building that he has come to set the building on fire, he literally is promising to torch the premises.

When he tells people to get out if they want to live, he is serious about ending the lives of anyone who foolishly believes they are brave enough to handle the sting of a beekeeper.

Although “The Beekeeper” has its lame scenes like when Adam is confronted by a fellow beekeeper and the fact that it seems foes cannot even pinch Adam even if they have him outnumbered 10 to one, Statham’s gangsterism makes up for any wack moments.

Nevertheless, “The Beekeeper” stings because of its heart thanks to the Eloise character.

Many young adults fear that their parents or grandparents will not be tech savvy enough to discern life-altering scams.

So, when Eloise is scammed, it feels like a member of one’s own family getting scammed.

And while many non-gangsters could not get the type of retribution that a real gangster can get, moviegoers will feel good living vicariously through the real gangster that is Adam Clay.

“The Beekeeper” has twists and turns that will resonate with many in this volatile and polarizing American climate.

And when moviegoers see what profession the villains are in and how they accumulated power, it will resonate even more in this current American climate.

But the ultimate theme of “The Beekeeper” is retribution.

While human beings should not seek out retribution on their own, that does not stop many people from hoping their enemies reap what they sow.

Unfortunately, Statham does not have the range to play characters that are much different than Adam Clay with the same monotone delivery, “The Beekeeper” presents that same personality type with the heartfelt back story that makes his anger understandable and almost justifiable.

Although vengeance is reserved for the Lord, it also feels good to see a villain get what they deserve in the form of street justice.

 

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Todd A. Smith
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