Halloween may still be several months away, but Netflix is getting an early start on its Netflix and Chills lineup. The streaming giant recently debuted its newest horror hit, The Swarm, and the French horror movie immediately buzzed its way into the Top 10 charts on the streaming platform.
Directed by Just Philippot from a screenplay by Jérôme Genevray and Franck Victor, The Swarm made its Netflix debut on Friday, Aug. 6 alongside fellow Netflix chart-toppers Hit & Run, which debuted at No. 4 on the overall chart, and Vivo, the animated musical film that shot to the No. 1 spot. The film follows Virginie, a single mother of two trying to stay ahead of the bills by farming locusts, a high-protein food. However, after she has trouble getting them to reproduce, she learns that they have a taste for blood. The Swarm stars Suliane Brahim, Sofian Khammes, Marie Narbonne, Raphael Romand, Nathalie Boyer, Victor Bonnel, Vincent Deniard, and Christian Bouillette.
Even before its Netflix debut, The Swarm earned some high praise. It was selected for the International Critics' Week at the 2020 Cannes Film Festival. Its success only continued following its Aug. 6 premiere, when it immediately landed a spot among the Top 10 movies. It ranked at No. 7, though its popularity on the platform has since slipped. As of this posting, The Swarm no longer makes any of Netflix's streaming charts. The Top 10 movies chart currently consists of titles like The Kissing Booth 3, The Vault, and Aftermath, among several others.
Netflix has not released any viewership data on The Swarm, and given the streamer's secrecy when it comes to such data, it is unlikely any viewing figures will be made public. The Swarm currently has a massive 82% Tomatometer rating among critics on Rotten Tomatoes. Richard Brody wrote for his The New Yorker review of the film, "What Alfred Hitchcock did for birds the French director Just Philippot does for grasshoppers in this extravagantly eerie, rootedly practical horror film." Movie Nation's Roger Moore said, "as creature features go, this one plays and finds its pulse-pounding payoff in grand style."
While Decider has dubbed The Swarm a "stream it" title, the movie has only managed to rack up a 29% rating among audience members. The overall consensus on a Decider Twitter poll was pretty mixed, too, with 24.7% of respondents saying "stream it" and 18.8% saying "skip it." The Swarm is available for streaming on Netflix.