Destination: Infestation (Swarm) (Ants on a Plane) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Destination: Infestation (Swarm) (Ants on a Plane) Reviews

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July 20, 2017
Six-legged Celluloid Presents...
A review of Ants on a Plane: "I'm tired of these mother formic ants on this mother formic plane!"

When I decided to watch and review this film, I chose the rental option on Amazon. I was immediately greeted by a message along the lines of "Ordered by mistake? Click here to cancel order", and I thought to myself, "This must be a warning from the gods of cinema". Well boy were they right to warn me! What was to follow was an hour and a half of my life I will never get back. But fear not - my job is to weed out the crap from the quality when it comes to formicly-centered films so you, our faithful readers, don't have to!

Originally released under the title Destination: Infestation, Ants on a Plane was released in 2007 as a joint production by Canadian and USA production companies (we are all of us to blame) for the Lifetime television network, directed by George Mendeluk. Mendeluk's claim to fame is being the director of the critically panned Bitter Harvest, about the 1930's attempted genocide by starvation in Soviet Ukraine, proving that he is capable of overcoming hurdles such as large budgets and compelling story matter to make terrible films.
A quick synopsis of the film: A flight leaving Columbia, and heading to Miami (yet again, ants + Florida = no), is struck by an infestation of genetically modified bullet ants. Apparently, these ants have adapted themselves to survive environmental destruction caused by humans (vertebrates strike again), and decide to punish their would-be oppressors by attacking passengers and chewing through fuel lines in order to bring the plane down. At some point, a government spook gets involved and threatens to have the plane blown up to protect the country from an outbreak of now-deadly bullet ants, and action and high drama ensues, or so one might think.
While the 00:39 mark is technically the first appearance of ants in the film, it is not until the 14:30 mark that our true heroes really enter the scene. The film up to that point is pretty much filler material, introducing us to our supposed hero, an entomologist played by Jessalyn Sarah Gilsig (of Nip/Tuck and Vikings fame. Fun fact: Jessalyn and I both attended McGill University in Montreal. She would go on to obtain her B.A. from McGill, and I would go on to leave after completing 1 semester earning a GPA whose number I will take to my grave). Additionally, we are introduced to a host of villains (unless otherwise specified, all human characters are assumed to be villains), including sickly drunk old man (actor not worth mentioning), alcoholic surfer-esque douche-nozzle with shell necklace played by man perpetually squinting at direct sunlight Ryan McDonell (of BSG and Smallville fame), and pseudo-cowboy offended by public breastfeeding played by Ivan Cermak (of Ants on a Plane fame), with the icing on the casting cake being the presence of the Air Marshal played by Roman jawline personified ANTonio Sabato Jr. Some of you may remember Antonio from General Hospital, and some of you who are even cooler will remember him from one of my favorite guilty pleasures, The Big Hit (starring Mark Wahlberg and Bokeem Woodbine). [Editor's Note: And some of you who are very not cool may remember him from Donald Trump's nomination]
The frass really hits the fan when the ants burst from a hole in the chest of the aforementioned sickly drunk old man (homage to Alien much?) with an effect that looks like the world's least palatable fondue fountain. This triggers the aforementioned series of events, in which our 6-legged heroes are repeatedly thwarted by the dastardly crew and passengers, as well as their own nobility. Thanks to the intrepid reporters at The Daily Ant, we know ants are nothing if not noble. This is shown around the 1-hour mark during an incredibly creepy "romantic" scene in which the Air Marshall gets a bit too forward with the Entomologist, and our formic heroes attempt to intervene on her behalf, only to be sprayed with an acidic formula of Borax by...none other than the Air Marshall (fun fact, Borax to ants is like a salt line to demons - see my other guilty pleasure, Supernatural, to get that reference). Or perhaps, the ants were just trying to stop another incident of cultural appropriation (see here for an example of ant culture appropriation), as they knew the two actors were about to participate in oral-oral trophallaxis (undoubtedly to communicate their plans to fire their agents). Ultimately, the humans prevail (or do they...), the plane lands, and most of the people you have come to be indifferent to over the past 89 minutes survive. If you have reached this point in the film, give yourself a pat on the back.
I would be remiss in not mentioning a small factual error I made in my previous review of Empire of the Ants, in which I stated (concerning knowledge of ant behavior), "Nobody knows, and there is no way of finding out. If only there was a specialty field of science that dealt with ants and ant behavior..." Well it turns out somebody does know! A class of scientists known as "myrmecologists", and it just so happens that founder and editor-in-chief of The Daily Ant, our very own Benjamin Blanchard, is just such a scientist! So I decided to consult with him concerning the authenticity of the bullet ants featured in this film, and was greeted with some very disconcerting information. As it turns out, the ants cast in this film to play the genetically modified bullet ants were, in fact, carpenter ants. I know what you are thinking, "Wasn't this filmed in 2007? How could such blatant xenotypism exist in this modern age?" Well, that is a question best put to Judy Lee and Laura Toplass (stage name I am assuming...). Apparently these two were not particularly "ant woke" back in the early aughts - let us hope they have since adjusted their anti-invertebrate attitudes.
In closing, Ants on a Plane doesn't offer much past the initial amusement of the reworked title. I give this film 2 bullet ant stings out of 5.
December 25, 2015
LOVED THIS PARADY. VERY GOOD
½ June 28, 2013
Like "Snakes on a Plane", but w/ ants. Sabato Jr. is hot tho haha.
June 11, 2012
This 'Snakes on a Plane' (2006) cash-in ticks all the boxes of a B-grade made-for-television production. Jessalyn Gilsig and Antonio Sabato Jr are OK as the leads, but are let down by the lack-luster direction of George Mendeluk, appalling script by Mary Weinstein (oh, the dialogue is so bad!), and a mixed bag of supporting players (how one wishes the ants got to Gilsig's adolescent daughter, played by the annoying Emily Tennant). In all, it's a disaster pic where nothing much happens and opts for bad melodrama over tongue-in-cheek humour.

Also known as 'Swarm', 'Deadly Swarm' and 'Ants on a Plane'.
December 2, 2011
Tried to rate 2 movies before but they did not com up in the search.
-Maternal Obsession 2 stars(ok story bad acting)
-Dancing Trees 2 stars (ok story bad acting)

This movie however was pretty horrible in all ways!!
½ September 25, 2011
No, just no.
1,5/5
½ January 6, 2011
This movie (although I started watching it with 40 mins remaining) has quickly become one of the funniest attempt at a serious situation that I have ever seen. Thanks for the laughs George.
½ January 2, 2011
One of the dumbest and worst movies I've ever seen...I will never get that hour and a half back in my life
September 11, 2010
Tried to rate 2 movies before but they did not com up in the search.
-Maternal Obsession 2 stars(ok story bad acting)
-Dancing Trees 2 stars (ok story bad acting)

This movie however was pretty horrible in all ways!!
½ July 6, 2010
As it quite clearly says above this is basically 'Ants on a Plane' with a no name cast who will 'work for food'. B-movie all the way, with nominal effects whose only stand out is about 10 minutes into the film when ants literally pour out of a mans chest. For late night insomniacs and anyone who thinks that day time TV shouldn't be missed.
½ June 17, 2010
Destination: Infestation (or Swarm, the title I watched it under) is a very stupid film but also an entertainingly stupid film. It's not even close to being original, has pretty poor acting and effects, plenty of stock footage and the usual group of cardboard cut out characters BUT it has killer ants attacking people in a plane which instantly makes up for all of the above!

The plot is identical to Snakes on a Plane with one difference being that Swarm contains genetically modified killer ants and not genetically modified killer snakes. The evil scientists have been messing around with some South American ants which have made them bigger, stronger and more intelligent! These ants also decide to become parasites as they hitch a ride inside the stomach of a tourist who boards a plane back to America. Cue his stomach bursting open releasing the killer ants which begin to cause havoc for the rest of passengers. Luckily for everyone else there is an entomologist on board who teams up with a US Air Marshall to save the day. Unfortunately for everyone, the Department of Defence doesn't want the plane to land in America to avoid releasing the ants on American soil. Just one more problem for our heroes to solve!

A film like this lives or dies on its effects and action; sadly Swarm lacks action and has very ropey effects. The kills are all bloodless and simply look like a load of black dots on the victims faces. The one shot of ants crawling over wires is used at least 6 times throughout the film which wouldn't be as bad if the shot is in anyway interesting! The acting from most is average but some of the bit characters are awful, especially the cowboy and the very annoying jock. Pretty much nothing makes sense, the air control tower looks like someone?s bedroom, it switches from night to day and back again for no reason, the ants seem to multiply in a matter of seconds and the lights still work in an unused air field. Still though it's these goofs that make Swarm an entertaining film. It's pure turn your brain off cheese that's a good little film to watch while hungover on a Sunday. Watch it but expect to be slightly dumber when it's over.
½ October 16, 2009
why I watched this im not sure, oh yea cuz the title sounded cool. But it was REALLY AWEFUL! super brutal. Every second of it.
Super Reviewer
½ October 15, 2009
A quick cash-in on Snakes On A Plane, Destination Infestation suffers from low budget B-Movie syndrome. It has to put the ants on hold for much of the film, leaving it up to the Z list actors to give "performances". Obviously, there's a lot of fun to be had as well. Marvel at the brilliance of an ant expert being on the plane. A plot device SO convenient, only the best of the worst can get away with it. For those that enjoyed SOAP, this will certainly be a satisfying follow-up.
½ October 6, 2009
Destination: Infestation (or Swarm, the title I watched it under) is a very stupid film but also an entertaining stupid film. It's not even close to being original, has pretty poor acting and effects, plenty of stock footage and the usual group of cardboard cut out characters BUT it has killer ants attacking people in a plane which instantly makes up for all of the above!

The plot is identical to Snakes on a Plane with one difference being that Swarm contains genetically modified killer ants and not genetically modified killer snakes. The evil scientists have been messing around with some South American ants which have made them bigger, stronger and more intelligent! These ants also decide to become parasites as they hitch a ride inside the stomach of a tourist who boards a plane back to America. Que his stomach bursting open releasing the killer ants which begin to cause havoc for the rest of passengers. Luckily for everyone else there is an entomologist on board who teams up with a US Air Marchall to save the day. Unfortunately for everyone the Department of Defence doesn't want to plane to land in America to avoid releasing the ants on American soil. Just one more problem for our heroes to solve!

A film like this lives or die son it's effects and action, sadly Swarm lacks action and has very ropey effects. The kills are all bloodless and simply look like a load of black dots on the victims faces. The one shot of ants crawling over wires is used at least 6 times throughout the film which wouldn't be as bad if the shot is in anyway interesting! The acting from most is average but some of the bit characters are awful, especially the cowboy and the very annoying jock. Pretty much nothing makes sense, the air control tower looks like someones bedroom, it switches from night to day and back again for no reason, the ants seem to multiply in a matter of seconds and the lights still work in an unused air field. Still though it's these goofs that make Swarm an entertaining film. It's pure turn your brain off cheese that's a good little film to watch while hungover on a Sunday. Watch it but expect to be slightly dumber when it's over.
½ September 14, 2009
Horrible acting, horrible effects, horrible movie!!
September 7, 2009
Ants on a plane!! The ants in question are called" Bullet Ants" and they have a painful bite that could kill. However, they spend most the film crawling about on armoured cable and apart from eating an annoying drunk student they are a bit crap really. The queen ant was easily killed and, big surprise!!! some ants escaped at the end.
July 4, 2009
This is perhaps the worst disaster movie of all time.

Say nay to "the motherfucking snakes on the motherfucking plane" - here comes "the mother fucking ants on the motherfucking plane"

One star, because even though it is horribly bad, it is to some extent watchable, for a while.

And - because the basic idea of swarms of insects does have a certain creep factor :-D
April 22, 2009
My favourite guilty pleasure - bad creature feature films. Extremely intelligent Ants on a plane stinging and killing people. How do they get on the plane? They chew through someones chest...no plot give away there, it is soooooooo obviously coming throughout the opening scenes.
½ March 15, 2009
Hmmm, it's kind of like "Snakes on a Plane" except it's ants and not snakes. Pretty much a mirror of each movie. Ants are harder to catch though and the ending leaves it wide open to the sequel as the Queen Ant is still alive as the movie ends... Picnics and campers beware!
March 11, 2009
Snake are to easy to kill, why not use Ants this time and let put an Entomologist on it with her daughter. Even though they ants are evolving in nature we are go to still call them Genetically Altered Ants, makes sense. Who said that Canadians can't make a movie just as bad as Americans Snakes On A Plane. Enrico Colantoni is in the movie but he so embarrassed his name doesn't even in the cast list (he the first radio control tower operator they talk to.
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