What's the *dumbest* "science" based movie you've ever seen?


#1

Continuing the discussion from What's the worst movie you've ever seen?:

@ActionAbe quoth:

This seems worthy to explore as a separate topic. There are so many to choose from. High on my list is Andromeda Strain. Yeah, no wonder you all die, you failed to take any precautions while handling the alien substances.

More recently, a scene in AntMan made me leave the room. The protagonist enters a storm sewer in the parking lot of the building they are hoping to infiltrate, and he comes out of a bathroom faucet inside the building. I believe I said out loud “what the actual fuck?” You can’t access water mains from curb basins because they never connect. Water is a) pressurized, b) sealed, and c) inaccessible without undoing a) and b). Yargh.

Let’s have 'em, the movies that failed hardest at science in your opinion.


#2

Interstellar. It was so bad I had to completely rewrite it to make it not hurt my brain.

The black hole science was good. Everything that happened on Earth was a complete joke.


#3

Ooh. I’ll have more to say about this later, but I can think of a trope in particular:

Every time an astronaut goes, “Hmm, there’s oxygen. Wonder if the air is breathable here.” and then removes their helmet.

Just once, I want to see someone do that and die instantly.


#4

There’s oxygen! Unfortunately… It was O3.


#5

John Clark’s wonderful book Ignition!, on rocket fuel research, has this to say about ozone:

For it has its drawbacks. The least of these is that it’s at least as toxic as fluorine. (People who speak of the invigorating odor of ozone have never met a real concentration of it!) Much more important is the fact that it’s unstable — murderously so. At the slightest provocation and sometimes for no apparent reason, it may revert explosively to oxygen. And this reversion is catalyzed by water, chlorine, metal oxides, alkalis —and by, apparently, certain substances which have not been identified. Compared to ozone, hydrogen peroxide has the sensitivity of a heavyweight wrestler.


#6

Real Genius. Which I enjoyed anyway. :smile:


#7

Prometheus. As somebody put it, the universe’s worst scientific expedition received their just rewards.


#8

Ah, but this is the (Cinematic) Marvelverse!


#9

Was that an inaccurate film, or were those just bad scientists? The same defence can be used for Prometheus, at a stretch.

I know The Core has already been mentioned elsewhere. As has The Black Hole.

San Andreas? Volcano? The Day After Tomorrow? 2012? Outbreak?


#10

Day after tomorrow would be on the list.


#11

I loved The Martian - especially the book - but the opening scene marred it. Hurricane force winds in at 1% atmospheric pressure. Throwing not just sand and pebbles, but equipment.

The book made up for it later: The second storm was more realistic, dust in the atmosphere more like a layer of smog. (Making it more insidious - noticed by Watney as a life-threatening drop in solar cell output.)


#12

Sure sign [cough Prometheus cough], with one glorious lampshading exception.


#13

Hands down:

Followed closely by:


#14

What I hated about Andromeda Strain was the feeling that he’d written himself into a corner and just gave up and deus ex machina’ed the ending. “oh god it’s so deadly super deadly gonna kill us all … oh no wait it mutated never mind now it’s harmless.”

That’s not an ending, that’s the laziest plot twist I think I’ve ever seen.


#15

Wasn’t Battlefield Earth religion-based, not science?

I gotta go with The Core. Plenty of other movies have equally bad science, but The Core was terrible in every other possible way…bad writing, paper mache characters, shitting effects, boring plot, horrible directing, terrible pacing, and “science” so bad even non-geeks knew it was silly. The Day After Tomorrow and Johnny Mnemonic would tie for second place. Really though, no need to push, there’s plenty of room at the bottom for crappy Hollywood science fiction.


#16

Like War of the Worlds? That was the book and not the film, though? (going by wiki - I haven’t read the book and not seen the film in years)

I love the style of the Andromeda Strain film, though.


#17

Does the movie not end that way? Haha I don’t think I’ve ever seen the movie, since the book pissed me off so much. I don’t dislike Crichton, but he did write a lot of his books as if they were screenplays. Timeline was one of the worst examples of it.


#18

I suppose; if you consider Scientology a religion as opposed to a lunatic cult.

There are enough pseudo-scientific elements in the movie that I think it still qualifies.


#19

What’s the difference?

I’m half joking. Christianity, for example, is no less fantastical and has done way more damage to the world, though that’s mainly because it has more followers and has been around a lot longer.

ETA: I have no problem with Christians as a faith, but I reserve the right to be honest that all supernatural beliefs are lunacy.


#20

Wasn’t that how Asimov, Clarke et al felt about him? :wink:

The military then begins seeding the clouds over the desert with silver iodide, stimulating precipitation which washes the organism into the ocean, where they believe it will be destroyed by the alkalinity of salt water. A federal board concludes that the crisis is over, but Stone somberly asks what may happen if such a situation were to recur.The film ends with a close up of the virus as it mutates again, causing the computer to overload, showing that Andromeda remains unpredictable.