The Swarm

D: Irwin Allen
Warner Bros. (Irwin Allen)
US 1978
116 mins (uncut version: 156 mins)


W: Stirling Silliphant [based on the novel by Arthur Herzog]
DP: Fred J. Koenecamp
Ed: Harold F. Kress 
Mus: Jerry Goldsmith

Michael Caine (Dr. Bradford Crane), Katharine Ross (Helena Anderson), Richard Widmark (Gen. Thaddeus Slater), Richard Chamberlain (Dr. Hubbard), Olivia de Havilland (Maureen Shauester), Ben Johnson (Felix Austin), Lee Grant (Anne MacGregor), Henry Fonda (Dr. Walter Krim)

Of all the disaster melodramas produced by Irwin Allen during the 1970's, The Swarm is quite easily the worst of the lot. Ridiculously overlong and brimful with clueless characters and pointless subplots which aren't integral to the main story, which, as may be assumed by the title, is about a swarm of killer bees that attack the population of a small town.
There's occasional moments of action amongst the endless talking and introduction of meaningless characters, but they're all quite unconvincing, though it has to be said that each on-screen death can only be a good thing, since it means there's less boring characters to suffer for the rest of the movie.
The film also exists in a 156 minute version, which apparently makes sense of all the pointless subplots. I'll make an honest guess that it probably won't make any difference to the overall enjoyment of the movie. Some people might describe it as "so bad, it's good", but that's far too generous an appraisal.

The Swarm
The Swarm