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Movie time.


Time travel is a well-worn plot device in Hollywood, but few films seriously consider the paradoxes that a time traveler might face. Here are some that do, although not always in a serious manner.

Back to the Future (1985)

Marry McFly (Michael J. Fox) confronts a variant of the grandfather paradox when he goes back to 1955 and unintentionally prevents his parents from marrying.

Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)

Bill (Alex Winter) and Ted (Keanu Reeves) romp through the past collecting historical figures for a class report. The story contains several examples of the ontological paradox, in which information is conveyed to people in the present by visitors from the future, rendering it impossible to determine when the knowledge originated.

Twelve Monkeys (1995)

A convict (Bruce Willis) goes back to the 1990s to prevent an epidemic that has forced the surviving remnants of humankind into a dystopian underground existence. Though his efforts may ultimately advance the cause, his own fate is sealed.

Primer (2004)

Two engineers (Shane Carruth and David Sullivan) accidentally invent a machine that allows them to travel back in time, where they confront the paradox of interacting with their past selves.

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Title Annotation:Back Story
Publication:Science News
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 14, 2010
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