The Swarm (1978)


Before we go any further lets get one thing out of the way. I absolutely love creature features. The whole nature fights back genre fascinates me, and the 1970s provided us with some fine examples. Over the coming months i’ll be talking about and reviewing many of these films, most of which I’ve seen many times including Day of the Animals (1977), Grizzly (1976) and my personal favourite, the William Shatner cult classic Kingdom of the Spiders (1977), which holds a special place in my heart as being the first horror movie I ever saw on the big screen, I was aged 14 and I’ve never forgotton the impact this cult movie had on me all those years ago…….

But for now lets start with the Irwin Allen 1978 classic, The Swarm. This movie, has over the years, gained a reputation for being a real stinker. The critics, as I remember, were very unkind to it, and to put it mildly absolutely hated it. I saw the movie the year it was released and loved it. For the life of me I couldn’t understand what it was the critics so loathed about it.

Heres how I saw it. It had a cast to die for including Michael Caine, Richard Widmark, Katherine Ross, Richard Chamberlain and the late great Henry Fonda. Everyone played it as seriously as they could, but keeping tongue firmly in cheek. They weren’t what you’d call career best performances but for me everyone concerned seemed to be having a great time. The sequences featuring the bees looked great, especially the attack on the family about 15 minutes in. That scene still makes my skin crawl now.

The whole movie is rounded off very nicely with a brilliant soundtrack by Jerry Goldsmith. What’s not to like ??? Yeah it’s by no means the best movie ever made but what the hell. I found it to be, and still find it to be, a hugely entertaining romp, performed more than adequately by an amazing cast.

Sorry to all you critics but I have to disagree with the negative reviews you dished out upon the movies release. I loved every second of this classic slice of 1970s hokum. I rediscovered it a couple of weeks ago, when I had the pleasure of watching the recently released 150 minute extended version on bluray. I have to say it looks very handsome indeed in Hi Def. The picture is pin sharp and the colours vibrant. It’s never looked better and the bluray is All Regions so will play anywhere. All in all if you saw this movie way back in 1978 and enjoyed it, grab the bluray and enjoy, and if you’ve never seen it please take my word for it when I say your in for a treat. Switch off your brain, common sense and enjoy………….

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I am passionate about movies and cinema generally. I love talking about them and writing about them.

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