Sphere-- bad movie

I just finished watching the movie Sphere (again) on NBC. I forgot how bad of a movie it was. I took a look at the review for the movie at AICN, hoping to gain some insight on why the movie is like it is, but I didn't care for the review either-- once you read the first paragraph you might as well stop since the rest of it doesn't really elaborate.

Anyway, Sphere is a bad movie-- (spoilers will follow) the dialog and interactions between these "geniuses" just isn't realistic. For one, it seemed to take them forever to think that this ship they discovered was from the future and not the past.

The scene where Fletcher gets killed by the swarm of jellyfish was very poorly directed-- none of the crew seemed to even care about her plight. Norman barely did more than look up from his reading-- once she was dead, he went back to his reading. If Norman is so afraid of jellyfish he should have been freaking out at the thought of someone else dying from jellyfish stings.

Then there was a forced moment of tension where Harry is given some calamari-- he starts to freak out. I'm thinking he must be allergic and is about to die, and the others get all upset and attempt to give him a Heimlich maneuver, but in the end, he "just doesn't like squid". Lame.

Then there's another forced moment of tension as something appears to be coming at their vessel while Norman and Beth are outside fetching a dead crewmember. Egg-like shapes fall all around them as they scurry back to safety, the music escalates to a frenzy, but in the end, they arrive back safely and the approaching creature simply vanishes from the radar screen.

Meanwhile, the "Jerry" character (who is believed to be an alien entity from the craft they're investigating) is presented too much like HAL-9000 from 2001. Here's another one-- when Norman figures out that they got the translation code wrong and that "Jerry" is really "Harry", why isn't every other occurence of the letter "a" an "e" or the letter "h" a "j"? When they get the message "My name is Jerry", shouldn't that say "My nema is Jerry"? It still doesn't make sense that a and e and h and j should be mixed up-- they aren't adjacent to each other if you follow that circular distribution they came up with. Sigh.

Another stupid scene-- Norman gets attacked by a couple of amphibious snakes--one jumps (?) up his suit and he falls to the floor writhing around and struggling with it. Beth comes strolling in casually and picks them up, explains they are the most venomous and dangerous snakes on Earth, but don't worry-- they're nocturnal and therefore only dangerous at night. Ugh. Norman later escapes from more snakes by opening a hatch and swimming outside the habitat without any kind of suit-- seems to me that the pressure at that depth and the temperature of the water would be enough to kill him instantly.

The ending explosion would have shattered the escape submarine if it only launched 12 seconds prior to the explosion.

Finally, these "bright minds" decide the only way to fix things is to use their power to forget about the whole thing. Why not first rid the world of hunger, poverty, disease, etc.??? And how does forgetting solve anything? Does that necessarily eliminate their powers? Won't they still manifest creatures through their subconscious dreaming all over again?

There are lot more critics of this film here, and more goofs found here.

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This article was published on May 12, 2001 11:07 PM.

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