4406 entries. 94 themes. Last updated December 26, 2016.

"A Sound of Thunder": Famous Science Fiction Story; Dubious Film (June 27, 1952)

"A Sound of Thunder,"a science fiction short story by Ray Bradbury, was first published in Collier's magazine in June 28, 1952, and was very widely reprinted for decades. The story was based on the idea of the butterfly effect, in which a very small event could cause a major change in the outcome of later events. Bradbury's story, set in 2055, concerned the use of a time machine to travel back into the very distant past. In the story the killing of a butterfly during the time of dinosaurs caused the future to change in subtle, but meaningful ways. For those of us who sometimes wonder what might have happened had this or that event been a little different, this story may have special interest.

Here is a radio adaptation of the story:

In 2004 Bradbury's story was made into a feature film with the same title. Why the distinguished actor Ben Kingsley accepted a leading role in this questionable film remains unclear. The film was widely panned by critics and viewers, and bombed at the box office, but I found it amusing enough to include this in the database: