GenreDocumentary, Drama WriterDavid Seltzer LanguageEnglish
CastLawrence Pressman DirectorWalon Green, Ed Spiegel Release dateJune 28, 1971 (1971-06-28) AwardsAcademy Award for Best Documentary Feature, BAFTA Award for Best Documentary Similar moviesLife, First Life, Rise of Animals: Triumph of the Vertebrates, Your Inner Fish, Wonders of Life, What Darwin Never Knew
TaglineShocking. Beautiful. Brilliant. Sensual. Deadly...and in the end, only they will survive.
The hellstrom chronicle part 1
The Hellstrom Chronicle is an American film released in 1971 which combines elements of documentary, science fiction, horror and apocalyptic prophecy to present a gripping satirical depiction of the Darwinian struggle for survival between humans and insects. It was conceived and produced by David L. Wolper, directed by Walon Green and written by David Seltzer, who earned a Writers Guild of America Award nomination for his screenplay. Green later called it "almost yellow-journally but good. We were giving the audience an elbow to the ribs every third line."
Several cinematographers photographed this film using stop-motion photography with microscopic and telescopic lenses. The trailer resembled an announcement for a science fiction movie. The film provided the inspiration for Frank Herbert's science fiction novel Hellstrom's Hive.
A fictitious scientist called Dr. Nils Hellstrom (played by Lawrence Pressman) guides viewers throughout the film. He claims, on the basis of scientific-sounding theories, that insects will ultimately win the fight for survival on planet Earth because of their adaptability and ability to reproduce rapidly, and that the human race will lose this fight largely because of excessive individualism. The film combines short clips from horror and science fiction movies with extraordinary camera sequences of butterflies, locusts, wasps, termites, ants, mayflies, other insects rarely seen before on film and insectivorous plants/insects.
Technical advisers Roy Snelling and Charles Hogue, were entomologists at the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History.
1972 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature
1972 BAFTA Award - Best Documentary feature
Home video releases
The film was released on DVD and Blu-ray January 10, 2012 from Olive Films.