The Swarm movie review | La nuée [without spoilers]

the swarm movie review poster


To save her farm from bankruptcy, a single mother begins a business of breeding edible grasshoppers. Soon she develops a strange, obsessive relationship with them.

Credit to IMDb

Quick states

  • Rating: 5.3
  • Genres: Drama, Fantasy, Horror
  • Stars: Suliane Brahim, Sofian Khammes, Marie Narbonne, Raphael Romand
  • Director: Just Philippot
  • Writers: Jérôme Genevray, Franck Victor
  • Certificate: R
  • Country: France
  • Language: French
  • Release Date: 2020
  • AKA: The Swarm ( La nuée )
  • Runtime: 101 min
  • Filming Location: Lot-et-Garonne, France – Puy-de-Dôme, France

The Swarm movie review

Hello guys, today we are reviewing the French movie The Swarm, also known as ” La Nuée “, which has been streamed lately on the Netflix network. The movie is starring the French actress Suliane Brahim, I am not familiar with Suliane, but apparently, she won like 3 Best Actress awards from different festivals for this movie and another one named ” Zone Blanche”. In adittion, we have Sofian Khammes, Marie Narbonne, Raphael Romand.

In the directing chair, we have Just Philippot, Philippot has directed some short movies. So knowing this Infos begs the question, how good The Swarm movie is going to be?

It’s funny that we just got to watch this movie because the first time was streamed was in the last year at the Catalonian International Film Festival, moreover, it got the Best Actress award (Suliane Brahim) and Special Prize of the Jury to the director Just Philippot! Besides it was supposed to be streamed at the Cannes Film Festival, but unfortunately due to the circumstances the world is going through, it has been canceled.

Until Netflix finally steps in and bought the copyrights of the swarm and it is available this month.

The film tells the story of a woman named Virginie Hébrard, a single mother with a son and a daughter. Virginie has a little project to support her family, this project is what the movie is about, it’s Locusts breeding. Virginie breeds locusts in order to sell them for example to other farmers or for food reasons…

The Swarm movie trailer

credit to Netflix youtube channel

However, Virginie’s ambitious project was not doing good, and will not last long! Things were escalating at Virginie’s farm until one day, a misunderstanding happened with a client, which leads Virginie to go into a state of anger and complete hysteria. Virginie went straight to the place where she keeps the locusts and destroyed the place! However, in the middle of her rage, she lost balance and fell directly on her head, ouch.

She is fine, this is the point where the movie starts taking a whole new direction and starts building a true thrill.

I believe The Swarm is a surprise, by all means! It surely takes its time at first building slowly but at a moment everything changes, so the movie takes a while until we get to the moment where we’ll be itching to know what is going to happen. The first 20 minutes truly gives you the impression that this is a normal movie, nothing special, and maybe got you to think about turning the movie off. However, trust me, the movie reaches a point where things turn around.

The idea of the movie is new and beautifully exciting, it can give you the impression of the movie The Silence. However, there are some sides of the story that can be a little more explored, talking here about the dramatic side between some characters. We won’t be surprised if we saw an exaggerated adaptation of the movie’s idea in the future.

the swarm


Let’s talk acting! In general, all the cast gave their best, you don’t feel any exaggeration. Suliane Brahim in the character Virginie, provided very good acting, she embodied the problems that Virginie is facing materially and morally, and the least of those problems are in one hand, the locusts not wanting to breed properly, no matter how hard Virginie tries, on the other hand, their kids are being affected by the situation.

In short, the acting was great, all the cast did good, sometimes you feel like watching a documentary, and the camera is there just in order to document the whole thing.

The Swarm is a good thrill and succeeded in placing elements that were during the slow beginning to participate in escalating the tension and the thrill. Besides, either the events were a result of worrying about someone or just from pure obsession, in the end, they all lead to the same thing which is, bad choices. And what bad choices lead to, is a continuous escalating thrill.

In Conclusion

To sum up, It is worth mentioning that the choice of mixing some of the soundtracks with the natural voices of the movie was a creative choice, and I appreciated the fact that even though it’s a horror movie, they didn’t use sudden sound effects to produce a jump scare. However, the scenes when the locusts are eating can make some people sick.

The events of the movie were on some occasions predictable. On the other hand, the daughter’s line of events, and the struggle she goes through, in terms of how the surrounding community looks at her mother in a decadent way and showing us how deep does the daughter hate living in that town in general, and at that farm especially, is an element that could be nice to not address it, at all, for an obvious reason which is that the movie does not need more procrastination in the building of the events leading to the central event.

The ending, however, could be way better than this! it is fine but can be better and make more sense.

The movie can use some editing in the script, in order to focus more on the horror side, and the beginning of the movie, to make it more catching for the viewer. You have an open mind and you like to watch cinematic works of different countries, you love horror, but don’t like to watch ghosts movies horror. The Swarm is defiantly a movie for you, we recommend it.

Writer and film critic for Filmiland website, movies enthusiast. "Everything I know I know from movies!"

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