Alan Smithee has a high tolerance for hokum in science fiction films. Knowing starts compellingly, with a creepy/cute elementary school student fifty years in the past who scribbles strings of numbers on a sheet of paper. Enter modern day physics professor John Koestler (Nicolas Cage), who sees the paper and deciphers the pattern. Turns out Koestler has some world-saving to do, and Cage's patented hysteria is perfect for the role.
Koestler spends the middle section of the film trying to prevent various disasters, to mildly entertaining effect. But then things go horribly wrong. Alan Smithee was willing to ignore the fact that the bad guys (or are they good guys?) look like members of a German techno band. He was willing to ignore the superfluous biblical references that attempt to infuse the film with metaphysical import. But he could not ignore the ludicrous and profoundly unsatisfactory resolution, topped by a final shot that perhaps the filmmakers thought would warm viewer's hearts but which Alan Smithee found puzzling and terrifying.
Alan Smithee recommends you catch this one on cable and, after the scene in the subway, change the channel to anything else.
Nicolas Cage's Professor John Koestler meets the techno band