“Today we are going to be talking about arguably one of the most important cultural masterpieces of all time.”
Having watched Eve Cornwell’s journey into becoming a lawyer, it is safe to say that we trust her opinions a lot. In this video, she looks into the accuracy of the court scene of the well loved Bee Movie.
Eve starts by showing us a short summary of the movie which she compares to watching the film instead of reading the book for your GCSE in English Literature – only to realise it does not have enough depth in it to actually do well. “The bee movie has come out with some of the best memes of all time,” she says as she shows clips of a couple of these. Then it is time to get down to the incredibly important case of Barry B. Benson.
“Barry B. Benson has no legal representation which is why I have my court suit on,” she says as we begin to learn his case. Barry wants to sue the entire human race for using honey. How do you define humanity as a class of claimants, she asks? But more importantly we should focus on the fact that a bee is going to court. “At 22 years old, I have never heard a bee talk,” she says and we can confirm, neither have we.
The first thing she points out is that the courts in the UK do not look like the ones in the film. However, the bigger issue at hand is that the defendant arrives and puts honey in his coffee – “let’s countersue with that,” she jokes. It then turns out that Barry is no longer suing humanity, but instead is suing the honey corporations – which makes more sense. However, Eve’s concern lies with the fact that he still has no legal representation. When he is addressed in court, Barry buzzes instead of talks at first – “he is such a joker.”
Now, if you have a trial of bees vs humans but the jury and the judge are both human – is that not a conflict of interest? Even Barry’s friend, Vanessa, who is in court with him is human which means she’s suing humanity even though that includes her. “Unlike Vanessa, I have prepared for this,” Eve says and then appears in an iconic bee costume.
So Barry intends to represent all bees which Eve says does actually hold some legal standing. In the UK this is referred to as a collective action which simply means that courts can conveniently group together similar cases to help with time management.
After this, it is time for the defendant’s opening statement which Eve says is pretty much the worst one of all time as he makes no legal points and the points he does make are irrelevant to the case. “All his arguments are so stupid and I hate them,” she says as she compares him to Geoffrey Fieger who is an American lawyer that has a TV advert and is known to deliver opening statements that can last hours, just to make the jury feel emotive.
After that awful statement, it is Barry’s turn. But as he is so tiny and would be almost impossible to see in a courtroom, Eve decides that this is not fair and takes action into her own hands by photoshopping a microphone onto him so that he can be heard. We then learn that the defendant plans to win by reminding the jury why they should hate bees. He intends to wind the bee up so much that Barry will sting someone out of anger. A quick google later, Eve discovers that honey bees die after one sting in which case, would that not be pre-meditated murder?
Thankfully, the scene ends as a win for the bees which is a decision made by the judge instead of the jury. Eve explains that de jure is a law that exists regardless of it being practiced, like how in the UK it is illegal to run down the street suspiciously holding a salmon. Whereas de facto is how the law is practiced. With that said, how are you going to financially compensate the bees?
All in all she gives the movie a low mark for legal accuracy but as a point of inspiration it is worth a lot higher. “It will forever BEE a cultural reset.”
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