This week from SHOUT! Kids Factory and director Alex Stadermann on amazing Bluray comes the charm that only “Maya the Bee” can bring!

Maya (voiced by Coco Jack Gillies) is a young bee with tons of curiosity. Simply too excited to remain inside the hive, she wants to know what is going on in the world! The queen is amused by Maya, but the queen’s royal advisor Buzzlina (Jackie Weaver) is hardly amused. Maya soon meets Willy (Kodi Smit-McPhee), a shy bee who follows her into adventures.

Also in the meadow are the hornets and a young Sting (Noah Taylor) who is being told that bee’s are dangerous, just as Maya is told that the hornets are! Falling into this is Buzzlina, who believes a war with the hornets is required to keep the bees safe. When the royal jelly needed by the queen is stolen, Maya wants to solve the mystery.

With the help of Flip the grasshopper, Kurt the dung beetle, the Army Ants and more meadow friends, Maya might just have what it takes to save them all!

Gillies as the voice of Maya, is so uplifting and fun with an endearing quality that just makes one smile. Smit-McPhee as Willy is so sweet and well done. Taylor as Sting is tough, and believes what he has been told about bees — that’s until he meets Maya. Weaver as Buzzlina is hilarious, and her voice completely fits the wonderful animation that this character gets.

The story is originally a German children’s novel, “The Adventures of Maya the Bee,” by Waldemar Bonsels. Published in 1912, it has been translated into many languages. “Maya the Bee” is also a comic book series leading it to an animated motion picture.

SHOUT! Factory brings such awesome features films, classic and contemporary television series, animation, live music and comedy specials to fans. To see more of what SHOUT! Factory has to offer go to www.shoutfactory.com.

TUBS OF POPCORN: I give “Maya the Bee” four tubs of popcorn out of five. This truly is such fun to watch with animation that is completely stellar to the story. I had such a good time watching the story unfold and watching characters mesh together as friends. The diversity the film brings will allow kids and their family to talk about it in such a way that the young ones will understand. This is such a totally relatable film with lessons of friendship, loyalty and other ways to resolve conflict.

“Maya the Bee” is a box office success in Europe, Australia and Asia and now on Bluray for everyone to enjoy in all its fantastic animation. Given the seal of approval by The Dove Foundation, “Maya the Bee” is truly meant for the family home library. I do so hope they make other films with Maya and the gang because I, for one, would be thrilled.

The Bluray contains an interview with Maya, “Dancing with Bees,” an exclusive episode of the “Maya the Bee” television series, blooper reel and trailers.

In the end — friends come in all shapes and sizes in the meadow!

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About the Author

Jeri Jacquin

Jeri Jacquin covers film, television, DVD/Bluray releases, celebrity interviews, festivals and all things entertainment.