One of my favorite science fiction stories would be Ray Bradbury’s A Sound of Thunder. It is a short story that has several of my favorite themes such as time travel, dinosaurs, and the concept of the Butterfly Effect. In the short story, a group of people travel into the distant past to hunt dinosaurs. However, they inadvertently changed the past by stepping on a prehistoric butterfly. When they returned to the present, they discover that a political election had a much different outcome.
However, I like the film adaptation of A Sound of Thunder better than the short story because the consequences of changing the past are more believable. When you go back 65 million years ago and change the past in even the most minor fashion, the way it changes the timeline would be far more extreme than just a changed political election.
When you go back 65 million years into the past and step on a single butterfly, it creates a combination between a Domino Effect and Snowball Effect. With that one butterfly dead, it would not breed and the continuation of its species would be compromised. With the butterfly species either endangered or extinct, certain plants would not be fertilized, which would cause some plants to die out or evolve in a different direction. Without the vegetation in question, the animals that would eat those plants would starve and die out while the predators that would feed on the herbivores would starve as well. The list of consequences of killing that one butterfly are infinite and keep growing in scale. That is the true nature of the Butterfly Effect!
With so much disrupted by the butterfly’s death, 65 million years of evolution would be completely altered and rewritten in ways we can’t even imagine. Due to this, the film adaptation of A Sound of Thunder provides much more believable consequences to time travel than the short story did. Throughout the film, you got to see various possibilities of how life could have evolved. One such example was a beast that was a mix between a baboon and lizard. This creature was this way because neither modern reptiles or primates evolved the same way as before. As a result, their biological bloodlines became fused into a new breed of lifeform.
If you like dinosaurs, science fiction, and time travel, this is the film for you. It truly makes you interested on what is evolutionarily possible if history is altered.