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At Theaters: 2/13/1998 On Video: 7/14/1998
Rated: PG-13 Length: 1 hr. 58 min.
Internet: Web Site Movie ID: 029806
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Inc.
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Storyline Heading

A thousand feet beneath the ocean surface in the middle of the Pacific, something has been discovered. Its origin, its structure, its malevolent energy are baffling. But whatever it is, it can reach into your mind. It knows your worst fears. And now it's starting to make those fears come true..

DETAILED STORYLINE
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Movie Type (Genre) Heading
Suspense Sci-Fi Thriller - SPHERE is less involving and intelligent than most Michael Crichton thrillers. It appears intended to appeal to fans of the TV series X-FILES. But, while the film starts out intelligent, after the first hour, it becomes dumb, contrived, and incoherent. The ending is awful.
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Cast and Crew Heading
Dustin Hoffman (Wag The Dog, Tootsie)
Sharon Stone (Casino, Basic Instinct)
Samuel L. Jackson (A Time To Kill, l87)
Peter Coyote (Endangered Species, ET)
Liev Schreiber (Scream 2, Phantoms)
Dir/Prod: Barry Levinson (Rain Man, Bugsy)
Ex Prod/Wri: Michael Crichton (Jurassic Park, Lost World)
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Production Notes Heading
About The Production
Location
The Master Builder
Special Visual Effects
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Content Heading
PROFANITY: Occasional and fairly extreme.
SEX/NUDITY: None
VIOLENCE: Occasional.
DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Drugs are used, but in a "medical" fashion, not an abusive one.
ACTION: Occasional.
COMEDY: Infrequent.
DETAILED CONTENT
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Pictures © Warner Bros. Pictures Inc. ®
All Rights Reserved.

Critic's Review Heading
Below Average
Sphere is the kind of first-class mess that only a top-line director with an A-list cast can create. With expectations high (And how could they not be, considering that another Barry Levinson/Dustin Hoffman collaboration, the excellent Wag the Dog, is still playing in theaters?), something this bad can't help but look even worse. Sphere starts out a little like an amalgamation of Contact and James Cameron's The Abyss, but, somewhere along the way, it collapses into the cellar with another recent science fiction effort, Event Horizon. Science and philosophy, which are used to good effect during Sphere's first hour, give way to mindless, confusing action sequences. Attempts at characterization fall apart. Intelligent writing, which is evident early on, is replaced by hackneyed drivel.
DETAILED CRITIC'S REVIEW
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Opinion Heading

Based on an Exit Polling of 157 Moviegoers

Ages Age Group
How
Many
Your Probability of
Enjoying This Movie
*
Would
Recommend
Movie To Friends
13-19Teens (M/F)
24
About 50/50
66%%
20-29Yg Adults (M)
22
Fairly Low
68%%
20-29Yg Adults (F)
19
About 50/50
68%%
30+Adults (M)
45
Fairly Low
56%%
30+Adults (F)
47
About 50/50
57%%
*Possible Ratings: Very High, High, Fairly High, About 50/50, Fairly Low, Low, Very Low.

About Our Opinions

Be sure to read the DETAILED OPINIONS
The positive and negative comments made by moviegoers are very
helpful when selecting a movie that's appropriate for you and your family.

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OPINION GRAPH


D ETAILED S TORYLINE

Hoffman stars as Dr. Norman Goodman, a psychologist who is unexpectedly summoned by the government to a spot in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. There, he joins a cadre of specialists supervised by a mysterious team leader named Barnes (Coyote). Also joining them is Stone as Beth Halperin, a biochemist who shares a past with Goodman; and Jackson as Harry Adams, a skeptical mathematician. The hastily assembled project team is asked to embark on a mission to explore a massive spacecraft that appears to have been submerged, untouched, for almost 300 years on the ocean floor.

The team quickly travels undersea and takes up residence in a high-tech deep-water habitat while investigating the strange craft. In examining the submerged spacecraft, the team uncovers a remarkable sphere inside it. The sphere's purpose and design are enigmatic but it somehow seems to have intelligence - and is inexplicably seductive.

As the team tries to unravel the meaning and function of the sphere, they become cut off from surface contact, their world limited to the claustrophobic habitat, the submerged craft, its baffling sphere - and each other.

And then, a series of horrifying incidents begin to unfold around them. One by one, the crew's subconscious terrors become real as each person's worst fears become physically manifested. With time and oxygen running out, the team members begin to turn on each other in a frantic search for who--or what--is creating this terror.

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