A thousand feet beneath the sea, the blackest holes are in the mind...
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- Rated: PG-13
- Run Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: September 8, 2009
- Originally Released: 1998
- Label: Warner Home Video
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Note: Behind-the-Scenes "Making Of" Documentary Shaping The Sphere: The Art of the Visual Effects Supervisor
- Audio Commentary by Dustin Hoffman and Samuel L. Jackson
- Production Notes
- Theatrical Trailer
- 3 TV Spots
- Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo - English, French
- Dolby Digital 5.1 - English, French
- Subtitles - English, French, Spanish
Performers, Cast and Crew:
|Starring||Dustin Hoffman, Samuel L. Jackson & Sharon Stone|
|Performer:||Peter Coyote, Liev Schreiber, Queen Latifah, Marga Gomez, Huey Lewis, Michael Keys Hall, Bernard Hocke & James Pickens, Jr.|
|Directed by||Barry Levinson|
|Edited by||Stu Linder|
|Screenwriting by||Kurt Wimmer, Stephen Hauser & Paul Attanasio|
|Composition by||Elliot Goldenthal|
|Story by||Michael Crichton|
|Produced by||Barry Levinson, Michael Crichton & Andrew Wald|
|Director of Photography:||Adam Greenberg|
Rating: 1.5/4 -- Given its situational premise -- outer space goes underwater -- Sphere is filled with visual potential, yet Levinson can't tap it. He's just a whole lot more comfortable trying to tame the human software than the technical hardware. Full Review
Globe and Mail
...Fresh....Witty...and packed with possibilities...
Sight and Sound
Three major stars being involved, it all wraps up happily but implausibly. Full Review
Rating: C -- If you want a better sci-fi film go see Dark City. A better Levinson movie? Try Wag the Dog. Full Review
Rating: 2/5 -- As the umpteenth entrant in the We-Are-Not-Alone sweepstakes, Sphere feels awfully familiar because it is. Full Review
Los Angeles Times
An empty shell.
Rating: 2/5 -- For a movie of a novel written by Michael Crichton with such a capable cast, Sphere is quite a disappointment. Full Review
Film Quips Online
When psychologist Norman Goodman (Dustin Hoffman) wrote a report for the government on how to deal with extraterrestrial life forces, he didn't expect his recommendations to be used. Now that a secret government agency is investigating what may be an alien spaceship that has been discovered partially buried on the floor of the Pacific Ocean, Norman finds that the plan he outlined is being put into effect and that the team he named in his report has been assembled. In addition to Norman, there is Harry Adams (Samuel L. Jackson), a mathematician; Ted Fielding (Liev Schreiber), a physicist; and Beth Halperin (Sharon Stone), a biochemist and Norman's old flame. Led by the secretive Barnes (Peter Coyote), the foursome undergoes a crash course in diving and living under the sea in a naval habitat and begins investigating the mysterious vessel, discovering a huge glowing sphere made of an unidentifiable substance with a shimmering, almost liquidlike surface. As the investigation continues, a series of strange, horrific events leads the team of scientists to doubt each other's sanity and motives. The film is based on the best-selling novel by Michael Crichton.
Action | High Seas | Mystery | Science-Fiction | Thriller | Undersea | Theatrical Release | Spaceships | Based On A Novel
- Theatrical release: February 13, 1998.
- Filmed at Mare Island, Vallejo, CA, and San Francisco, CA.
- Director Barry Levinson had previously collaborated with novelist Michael Crichton on DISCLOSURE.
- Levinson had been interested in directing a science film for years and was drawn to Crichton's story because it reflected many of the themes prevalent in Levinson's other films, such as betrayal, friendship, and loyalty.
- SPHERE marks Levinson's fourth film with actor Dustin Hoffman, who also appeared in RAIN MAN, SLEEPERS, and WAG THE DOG.
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