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Wednesday, January 21, 2004
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Kutcher stars, succeeds in new thriller

Cassie Fauss
Skiff Staff


The butterfly effect [n]- the phenomenon whereby a small change at one place in a complex system can have large effects elsewhere.

Newton’s law says that for every action there is a reaction. Something as trivial as the flapping of a butterfly’s wings could affect weather systems across the globe.

The film, “The Butterfly Effect,” portrays this theory as it applies to life’s events and shows how fate can be changed with the blink of an eye.

I must admit, I was pretty skeptical about seeing a movie starring Ashton Kutcher.

His goofball roles in such films as “Dude, Where’s My Car?” and “Just Married” left me pretty doubtful that Kutcher possessed any talent beyond practical jokes and teenage comedies.

Boy, was I surprised.

In “The Butterfly Effect,” Kutcher takes the lead as Evan Treborn, a guy with a memory deficiency who learns to control his ailment.

Evan does not remember significant events from his childhood. He suffers from a memory loss that causes him to block out tragic events.

As a college student, Evan uses his deficiency as the basis of research for his psychology class. In his attempts to remember forgotten events, Evan realizes he has the power to change the course of his life.

In doing so, Evan discovers a way to go back in time and relive the moments he has forgotten, and learns he is able to alter the outcome of events and repair damages.

He soon discovers, however, that these changes stir unintended consequences that disrupt the fabric of his life.

As he tries to rewrite his life history, he discovers it’s not as easy as it may seem. Evan must figure out how to alter his past without causing harm to those he cares about.

Although the plot may seem preposterous, this psychological thriller is not so predictable.

This film may not be Oscar-worthy, but I liked it. It was well-written and impressively produced.

The cinematographic quality of the film is amazing and the extraordinary editing blew me away. The psychedelic editing parallels that of “The Rules of Attraction,” another film whose noteworthy imagery and direction far surpass the plot content.

I definitely recommend “The Butterfly Effect” to anyone who is interested in something different. It is one of the few “artsy” films that make it to the big screen.

I promise you won’t be disappointed with the film’s quality, even if you don’t like Ashton Kutcher.

“The Butterfly Effect,” directed by Eric Bress and J. Mackye Gruber, opens on Friday at theaters everywhere.

Other familiar faces in this film include Amy Smart (“Road Trip”, “Varsity Blues”), Melora Walters (“Magnolia”,“Boogie Nights”), and Eric Stoltz (“Pulp Fiction”, “The Rules of Attraction”).

The Butterfly Effect