Black Swarm

Year of Release: 2007
Genre:  Horror / Sci-Fi
IMDB Rating: 4.1 / 10
Level of Awful: Low
Breast-O-Meter: 0 / 5

WHAT IT’S ABOUT:

This movie has reminded me that life is full of disappointment. When you’re watching a movie directed by a man who brought us a great classic like Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie you think you’re in good hands, but I was proven wrong. Even the inclusion of Robert Englund wasn’t enough to bring this little movie up to par. The problem with it is that it’s not bad enough to be a funny b-movie but it isn’t good enough to be a good movie, so it hovers somewhere in between in a poorly defined b-movie limbo. The acting’s alright but it’s nothing great and the CGI isn’t amazing but it’s not laughable. It makes it very difficult to make fun of the movie and at the same time a little difficult to enjoy it.

Creepy ice cream vendors have really dropped their hygiene standards in recent years...

We begin our tale of love, adventure, betrayal and wasps in the little town of Black Stone. It’s one of those typical little American towns full of good people with morals, traditional values, pristine gardens and an enormous church. 10 years ago Jane Kozik left Black Stone to go live in Manhattan after her husband was killed in a freak accident while trying to take care of a wasp nest. I say it was a freak accident because he burned to death. Now she’s moving back to town and she’s bringing her daughter Kelsey along for the ride. She knows it’ll be an adjustment for her daughter, who’s spent her entire life growing up in the big city with all that new fangled technology, but Jane thinks this move is exactly what the two of them need. Why they need it we’re never really told, but I was prepared to run with it and see where the story was going to take me.

Nothing good will come from a honey scented body scrub.

Oddly enough it takes us to a street corner with Robert Englund on it. He plays Eli, Black Stone’s resident bee keeper who doesn’t keep bees but instead grows peaches. For some or other reason Kelsey takes an immediate shining to Eli, despite the fact that he’s an overly sarcastic man with ninja escape skills and no patience for children. Floating around town is Devin, the twin brother of Jane’s dead husband, and he’s a pest exterminator. Incidentally many people in town are walking around with enormous stings on their faces and making mysterious buzzing sounds, but that’s hardly important at this stage of the movie and all the characters ignore this strange behaviour for the time being. This includes the obnoxious mayor who’s busy trying to breathe some new life into Black Stone.

Wasp sting facial masks would never make it beyond the initial testing stages...

The wasps themselves play a relatively minor role in this movie. Lacking the acting skills of the ants from The Hive, their menace is more implied that directly seen. What we do know is that when they sting you you die, but they can use your corpse as a host for their more nefarious undertakings. This includes turning the human into a drone where a wasp seems to take control of the body and guide it. Wasps have a poor understanding of human nature, however, so their ability to drive their human drone is at times a bit off. Along the way we’ll also meet Katherine Randell, a highly qualified entomologist who looks more like the madam of a high-end brothel in a power suit. She’s absolutely stumped as to what’s going on, and she needs Devin’s expertise to help her unwrap the mystery wrapped in an enigma contained in a hive that’s going on in Black Stone. The two also need to act quick, because the wasps are beginning to gather their forces for an all-out attack on the town’s population, and before long they’ll have turned every last human they can find into yet another one of their poorly driven drones.

LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:

  • When confronted with giant stinging insects the best thing to do is take off your protective gear.
  • American bakeries are very quick to relocate to Mexico whenever the opportunity arises.
  • Stinging wasps, disappearing sting victims and murder most foul make an entomologist’s day.
  • Gorgeous blonde entomologists are often caught up in other people’s awkward family situations.
  • If you tease DNA it may be willing to give you a few answers.
  • Wherever Robert Englund appears, there’s bound to be an Elm Street nearby.
  • It’s quite common for people to lose all cognitive function and start make buzzing noises from inside their skulls.
  • The true horrors of genetically mutated wasps are a little lost on a 9-year-old girl.

BLACK SWARM TRAILER

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Posted on October 15, 2011, in Awful Level: Low and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. I completely forgot that Power Rangers movie even existed. It always sucks when you watch a movie not bad enough to be good, but boring enough to be bad. You handled it well with your review though. Usually I struggle to write something after watching a movie that strikes me as bad in an uninspiring way.

    • I saw the Power Rangers bit on the movie’s Wikipedia page and was instantly reminded of far too many traumatic childhood memories. Movies that fall into this grey area of cheesiness are quite tricky to work with, so what I try and do is imagine that the plotline was a little bit more ridiculous than it was. That usually helps me get the review going.

  1. Pingback: Movie Monday Blog Roundup « Cheap As They Come

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