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The Swarm is a 1978 American disaster film about a killer bee invasion of Texasmarker. It was adapted from a novel of the same name by Arthur Herzog.

The director was Irwin Allen, and the cast included Michael Caine, Katharine Ross, Richard Widmark, Richard Chamberlain, Olivia de Havilland, Ben Johnson, Lee Grant, Patty Duke, Slim Pickens, Bradford Dillman, Fred MacMurray (in his final movie appearance), and Henry Fonda.

Many filmgoers and critics consider this film one of the worst "disaster films" ever made, along with Allen's subsequent films Beyond the Poseidon Adventure and When Time Ran Out (1980). It was one of two disaster films (the other being 1979's Beyond the Poseidon Adventure), directed solely by the "master of disaster" Allen, who had experience directing several movies and many episodes of his TV shows.

The film was a notorious box office bomb upon its release in 1978, barely making it two weeks in theaters. Michael Caine, despite other failed films, claims it is the worst film he ever made (along with his later film Ashanti): "It wasn't just me, Hank Fonda was in it too, but I got the blame for it" he claimed in an interview with Michael Parkinson.

Despite the box office failure, this film was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Costume Design and retained a cult following for Jerry Goldsmith's score to the film, its all-star cast, as well as being part of the horror film genre.

Running times

The film was released initially at 116 minutes. When released on laserdisc in the 1980s, it was expanded to 156 minutes. This 156 minute version is the one available on DVD.

Score

The musical score was composed by Academy Award winner Jerry Goldsmith and used French horns and such to sound like the humming of bees.

The score was originally released on Warner Bros. Records in 1978 at the same time of the movie, but has since gone out of print. An expanded, remastered score was released in a limited edition by Prometheus Records and contained over forty minutes of previously unreleased material. It has also gone out of print.

See also



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