A lot of critics attack Disney’s 1979 sci-fi blockbuster The Black Hole on the basis of science. And while one level that’s understandable, it’s not terribly fair. For instance one critic called foul on the black hole being visible.
And while it’s true that according to science they cannot be seen–you don’t see the black hole itself, but the reaction of objects in the range of its influence–can you imagine how viewers would have responded to an empty void?
These days? It wouldn’t probably be such a big deal, but in 1979? Competing against Star Trek: The Motion Picture (which for my money had way too many plot elements in common with the Space: 1999 episode Voyager’s Return, but that’s another post) that had to couch it in terms that viewers could understand (and not openly mock, it goes without saying).
Besides, when we’re talking about science, why is it movies based on Star Trek or the X-Men get a pass? For instance, the transporter from Star Trek (which breaks a person down into what I assume is data, and rebuilds them on the other end is pretty silly (scientists are working on such things right now though I’d have to ask if that’s because they were inspired by Star Trek, as opposed to vice versa) and let’s not even get started on the X-Men, characters that exist in a universe where a person can have the power to project beams of force from their eyes, or shape shift (which I could easier accept if it were as painful as altering your skeletal structure and flesh should be).