It's obvious why Hollywood was sold on an adaptation of Michael Crichton's 1987 novel about a deep sea search for extraterrestrial life; it's a classic recipe for big-screen sci-fi action — just add water. But Sphere leaves out a few key ingredients, namely signs of intelligent life among the crew or the aliens. It turns out the scariest thing about this scientific expedition-- headed up by a psychologist (Hoffman), a lazy mathematician (Jackson), and a tough-bitch astrophysicist (Stone), is not the giant snake or the daredevil diving snaffoos, but bad dialogue.
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