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The Swarm (1978)

 -  Horror  -  14 July 1978 (USA)
4.3
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Ratings: 4.3/10 from 4,509 users  
Reviews: 102 user | 57 critic

A huge swarm of deadly African bees spreads terror over American cities by killing thousands of people.

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: The Swarm (1978)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Brad Crane
...
Helena
...
Gen. Slater
...
Dr. Hubbard
...
Maureen Schuester
...
Felix
...
Anne MacGregor
...
Dr. Andrews (as Jose Ferrer)
...
Rita (as Patty Duke Astin)
...
Jud Hawkins
...
Major Baker
...
Clarence
...
Dr. Krim
...
General Thompson
Christian Juttner ...
Paul Durant
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Storyline

Killer bees from South America have been breeding with the gentler bees of more northern climes, slowly extending their territory northward decade after decade. Entomologist Brad Crane has discovered that something is making them come together in huge, killer swarms. He wants to keep the General Slater from using military tactics from further upsetting the balance of nature as they join to try to stop the swarms from approaching Houston. Written by Ørnås

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Monsters by the millions - and they're all for real! See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 July 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der tödliche Schwarm  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$21,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$10,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended)

Sound Mix:

(35 mm optical prints)| (35 mm magnetic prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The picture was three years in planning and development and took 65 days to shoot. See more »

Goofs

As Helena and Crane stroll during the train evacuation, scene changes from early evening to broad daylight. See more »

Quotes

Brad Crane: We've been fighting a losing battle against the insects for fifteen years, but I never thought I'd see the final face-off in my lifetime. And I never dreamed, that it would turn out to be the bees. They've always been our friend.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Tremors: The Sounds of Silence (2003) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Typical Irwin Allen - So It's Not Great But It Is Campy Fun
18 May 2010 | by (Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

You have to admit that Irwin Allen was the master of disaster back in the 70's - in quantity if not in quality. "The Swarm" is a pretty typical Irwin Allen disaster movie - meaning that, while it's not exactly a classic, it's generally good fun. Most of the performances here are pretty good - to be expected since there's a galaxy of pretty big names in this, including the likes of Michael Caine, Henry Fonda, Fred MacMurray and Patty Duke. Yes, there's a couple of dud performances. Katharine Ross as Helena struck me as having as much passion as a fish, but overall the performances were OK. The effects were pretty good - particularly the depictions of those under attack by the bees, but for some reason a couple of totally unnecessary romantic subplots were put in.

The story was OK. A giant swarm of African killer bees attacks a military base and then descends on a nearby small town in Texas. The battle between the military and scientists over who would control the fight against the bees is quite realistic, and the movie does keep building to a real sense of hopelessness as the swarm descends upon Houston.

I enjoyed this. No, it's not a masterpiece. From other reviews I've seen, I had the misfortune to watch the almost two and a half hour directors' cut. Apparently the theatrical version is far more compact at a bit under two hours. The directors' cut does seem to include a lot of unnecessary material.


4 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Funniest scene or line ryannaughton1138-1
The greatest piece of crap ever GRLMGC
Most awful two hours spent in a cinema. garyahampton
The music was good ryannaughton1138-1
Has anyone read the novel? CreativeMedia
Time for a remake? captmike10
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