When exhausted pop singer Vicki Robbins (Suzanna Leigh) heads to a far-flung isle for some rest and relaxation, she discovers that the resident apiarist is harboring a secret: a deliberately bred strain of killer bees. As the insects begin killing the island’s denizens, Vicki finds herself in the fight of her life. Frank Finlay, Guy Doleman and Catherine Finn also star in this stinging tale from director Freddie Francis.
A clapper boy in British films while a teenager, Freddie Francis became a camera assistant and in the mid-1950s was an operator for Oswald Morris, the director of photography on John Huston’s Moulin Rouge (1953) and Beat the Devil (1954); he also directed second-unit footage for Huston’s Moby Dick (1956). As a director of photography himself, Francis worked for directors Karel Reisz (Saturday Night and Sunday Morning 1961, Night Must Fall (1964), Jack Cardiff (Sons and Lovers), and fellow Huston-alumnus Jack Clayton (Room at the Top (1959), The Innocents).
In the early 1960s he began directing but still occasionally shot films for such directors as Reisz and David Lynch. As a director, Francis has specialized in horror films, notably at Hammer, but also for producers Max J. Rosenberg and Milton Subotsky and the anthology films Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors (1965), Torture Garden, and Tales from the Crypt (1972). —allmovie guide