The Bees (1978) reviews and overview

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[Total: 5   Average: 2.4/5]

‘They prey on human flesh!’

The Bees is a 1978 Mexican-American science fiction horror feature film written, produced and directed by Alfredo Zacarías (Demonoid; Capulina vs. The Mummies). Roger Corman was the executive producer because The Bees was distributed in the USA by his New World Pictures. The movie stars John Saxon, Angel Tompkins, John Carradine and Claudio Brook.

Plot:

Corrupt corporations have smuggled a deadly strain of South American killer bees into the United States and now the entire world may be on the brink of imminent destruction!

As cities tumble, body counts rise, and mass hysteria ensues, scientist John Norman (John Saxon) thinks he might have discovered the secret strategy to stop the bees!

Reviews [click links to read more]:

“OK it is cheesy and over the top, but that is the point. It also carries a message which ironically is relevant today. John Carradine has a major part and hams it up magnificently. His arthritic hands are painfully obvious in many shots, but he carried on like the trooper he was. John Saxon is the epitome of the heroic leading man…” Trevor William Douglas, Amazon.com

” …dumb as most of these films were, their message wasn’t entirely without merit. The interesting thing, I think, is how much easier that message was to swallow when it was part of a fun little movie like The Bees or Frogs, rather than being served up in indigestible gelatinous lumps in the likes of The Swarm or Prophecy. And this film is fun!” And You Call Yourself a Scientist!

“The centerpiece of the film is an attack sequence set at the Rose Parade, watching the swarm bring the nightmare to floats and bleachers, with panic exploding as people struggle to escape death-by-stingers. Dramatically, the picture isn’t profound, but Zacharias keeps it loaded with threat.” Brian Orndorf, Blu-ray.com

“The attacks are staged as almost comic vignettes with light-hearted music switching to suspenseful strings as opticals of coffee grounds floating in water or swarms that look like wood chips or dry leaves cause extras (and even stock footage extras) to run, scream, and fall in death throws that look more like pratfalls.” Eric Cotenas, DVD Drive-in

Main cast and characters:

  • John Saxon … John Norman
  • Angel Tompkins … Sandra Miller
  • John Carradine … Doctor Sigmund Hummel
  • Claudio Brook … Doctor Miller
  • Alicia Encinas … Alicia
  • Julio César Imbert … Julio (as Julio Cesar)
  • Armando Martín … Arthur (as Armand Martin)
  • José Chávez … Father (as Jose Chavez Trowe)
  • George Belanger … Undersecretary Brennan (as George Bellanger)
  • Delroy White … Winkler (as Deloy White)
  • Roger Cudney … Blankeley
  • Julia Yallop … Model
  • Chad Hastings … Gray
  • Elizabeth Wallace … Secretary
  • Al Jones … Mugger 1
  • Gray Johnson … Mugger 2
  • Whitey Hughes … Gentleman at Park
  • David Silberkleit … Boy at Park
  • Brian Hanna … Boy at Park
  • Alfred Melhem … Boy at Park
  • Don Maxwell … U.S. General

Technical details:

92 minutes | 1.85:1

Buy: Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk

Trivia:

Warner Bros. reputedly paid New World Pictures a large amount for the film’s release to be delayed until after that of The Swarm (1978)

  

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