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Killer Bees (1974)

TV Movie  |  Unrated  |   |  Horror  |  26 February 1974 (USA)
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A strong-willed woman not only dominates her family of California winegrowers, but also has a strange hold on a colony of bees in her vineyard.


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Title: Killer Bees (TV Movie 1974)

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Complete credited cast:
Edward van Bohlen
Victoria Wells
Madame Maria von Bohlen
Dr. Helmut van Bohlen
Don McGovern ...
Mathias van Bohlen (as Don McGovern)
Craig Stevens ...
Rudolf van Bohlen
John S. Ragin ...
Sergeant Jeffreys
Liam Dunn ...
Zeb Tucker
Heather Ann Bostain ...
Roseanna / Housekeeper
Don Gentry ...
Lineman (as Donald Gentry)
Jack Perkins ...
Robert L. Balzer ...
Dan Woodworth ...
Townsman (as Daniel Woodworth)


A strong-willed woman not only dominates her family of California winegrowers, but also has a strange hold on a colony of bees in her vineyard. Written by

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


She controls the bees. They'll kill for her -- and die for her. She's their queen... and she'll live forever.








Release Date:

26 February 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Abejas asesinas  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


For the scene in which Gloria Swanson is covered in bees, the bees were taken to the location in dry ice, which made them sleepy. While in this almost comatose state, and with the light turned out, they were placed on Miss Swanson's shoulders, arms and brimmed hat. Then the hot lights were switched on, and as the bees warmed up they began to crawl and move about. Once filming of the scene was completed, Swanson was applauded by the crew. See more »


Featured in House of Harrington (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

I Got Stung by Kate Jackson and Gloria Swanson
23 May 2009 | by (Earth) – See all my reviews

After a swarm of mysterious bees attacks and kills trespasser Jack Perkins on a grape field belonging to the "Van Bohlen Winery", handsome Edward Albert (as Edward Van Bohlen) drives into the town of "Von Bohlen" with pretty fiancée Kate Jackson (as Victoria Wells). The couple has been living in San Francisco for two years, and Ms. Jackson is newly pregnant. Although Mr. Albert has advised against it, Jackson is determined get acquainted with his weird and wealthy family.

Most importantly, Jackson meets queenly matriarch Gloria Swanson (as Maria Von Bohlen), who displays an affinity for bees. After both Roger Davis (as Helmut Van Bohlen), and a wayward bee disrupt the couple's first dinner, Jackson begins to regret her visit. Mr. Davis' news about the film's opening bee killing is only the beginning. Before getting out of "Von Bohlen", Jackson intends to tell "Madame" Swanson that, as Albert's pregnant lover, she already considers herself a part of the family.

Gloria Swanson, "Killer Bees", and two "Dark Shadows" alumni make this an irresistible TV movie event.

Swanson did "Bees" and the film "Airport 1975", after a long absence. The movie is, actually, a finer "performance" - but, at this point, it's just nice to see Swanson in anything. - Aside: I met her around this time and she seemed very capable of continuing her career. And, she looked more natural in person (without the gray hair). Swanson advised me against eating sugar; she said, "Sugar is poison." I followed her advice very strictly at first, and still won't add sugar to anything. I think she was correct.

"Angel" watchers note Kate Jackson is the "star" of this movie and is amazingly beautiful during the last act.

Jackson joined "Dark Shadows" during the "1995" storyline, and Roger Davis last appeared during the earlier "Leviathan" storyline; so, they never appeared together on the show. But, if you count the first "Dark Shadows" movie, they were regulars at the same time. Davis had been married Jaclyn Smith, another of "Charlie's Angels", since 1968. Jackson and "Bees" co-star Edward Albert were a great-looking couple who should have considered getting married - see them also in "Death Cruise" (1974). Small world, isn't it?

There seems to have been some confusion about whether to name the main family "Van Bohlen" or "Von Bohlen" - my guess is that the city sign is wrong, and it's supposed to be the more frequently pronounced "Van Bohlen". As far as the film goes, it's done well enough for a limited budget TV movie. How exactly do you direct bees? They can't have been easy, and Curtis Harrington deserves credit for putting some sting in the proceedings. Interestingly, the production design is by Joel Schumacher.

******** Killer Bees (2/26/74) Curtis Harrington ~ Kate Jackson, Edward Albert, Gloria Swanson, Roger Davis

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