The Swarm

1978

Horror / Thriller

3
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 11%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 18%
IMDb Rating 4.4 10 6028

Synopsis


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December 07, 2018 at 12:58 AM

Director

Cast

Michael Caine as Brad Crane
Katharine Ross as Captain Helena Anderson
Olivia de Havilland as Maureen Schuester
Henry Fonda as Dr. Walter Krim
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.32 GB
1280*534
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 56 min
P/S 23 / 44
2.51 GB
1920*800
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 56 min
P/S 25 / 49

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Libretio 6 / 10

Great fun, depending on which version you see...

THE SWARM

Aspect ratio: 2.39:1 (Panavision)

Sound format: 4-track magnetic stereo

A swarm of African killer bees rampage across America's south-west before descending on Houston, destroying everything in their path.

Contrary to popular opinion, THE SWARM is not the worst movie ever made, and anyone who says otherwise clearly hasn't seen the collected works of Jesùs Franco, Andy Milligan or Woody Allen (just kidding!). Representing the last gasp of the disaster cycle inaugurated by Ross Hunter's big-time adaptation of Arthur Hailey's AIRPORT (1969) and further popularized by the likes of THE POSEIDON ADVENTURE (1972) and THE TOWERING INFERNO (1974) - the latter a bona fide Hollywood classic - THE SWARM encapsulates director Irwin Allen's basic commercial ethos: Big stars, big set-pieces, and big drama.

Taking its cue from previous small-scale entries like THE DEADLY BEES (1966) and TERROR OUT OF THE SKY (1978), Allen's old-fashioned monster movie revels in the destruction of towns, trains, nuclear power plants and the reputations of numerous high-profile actors. However, Stirling Silliphant's script is so hokey, it's difficult to believe he wasn't poking inglorious fun at the entire project: Michael Caine is so obviously miscast (as a 'brilliant' entomologist), and so clearly contemptuous of the material, his expression never changes throughout the entire film, though co-star Richard Widmark gives it everything he's got as a gruff military type who's eager to quell the threat by bombing everything in sight. Henry Fonda rises above the fray as a dedicated immunologist, and Slim Pickens is quietly dignified as a bereaved father, while Olivia De Havilland forms the centerpiece of a gentle romantic subplot (she's courted by Fred MacMurray and Ben Johnson). Richard Chamberlain, Lee Grant, Jose Ferrer, Bradford Dillman and Patty Duke Astin are featured in supporting roles alongside leading lady Katharine Ross, who seems particularly embarrassed by her ridiculous dialogue (get a load of her hysterical reaction to the death of a sympathetic younger character - if you lean forward, you can almost *smell* the ham!).

The film exists in two separate versions: The 116 minute theatrical print, and an expanded 'director's cut' running 155 minutes which pads the narrative with pointless dialogue exchanges, turning a tightly constructed disaster thriller into an endless yak-fest. Stick with the original.

Reviewed by Uffe-13 7 / 10

To Bee Or Not To Bee...

Highly enjoyable (and very expensive) flop from Irwin Allen, the Master of Disaster. Michael Caine, with help from a bunch of other famous actors, fight against a huge swarm of African killer bees and almost destroy the entire city of Houston in the progress. Try to get hold of the longer version (about half an hour longer than the original), which contain more drama and longer action scenes. Considered a turkey among most critics, but this film is far better than many recent box-office hits. Note that the local cinema is showing "The Towering Inferno".

Reviewed by gridoon 7 / 10

Agreeable time-filler, but WAY overlong.

"The Swarm" has its share of flaws, no doubt about that: it's overlong, it's filled with genre cliches (many veterans cast in pointless supporting roles, indifferent romances) and it's occasionally overacted, especially by Michael Caine, who has a role far below his abilities. However, those who are calling it "terrible" and "campy" are REALLY overdoing it. The special effects are actually FIRST-RATE and most of the attack sequences are utterly convincing. Don't judge the film on the basis of its bad reputation; watch it for yourself and you'll discover that, while it's not an "art" film, it's an agreeable way to kill two hours.

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