The Butterfly Effect

2004

The Butterfly Effect (2004)

TOMATOMETER

Critic Consensus: The premise is intriguing, but it's placed in the service of an overwrought and tasteless thriller.

AUDIENCE SCORE


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Movie Info

Final Destination 2 screenwriters Eric Bress and J. Mackye Gruber make their directorial debut with the sci-fi thriller The Butterfly Effect. Evan Treborn (Ashton Kutcher with facial hair) wants to free himself from his disturbing childhood memories. As a kid, he often blacked out for long periods of time and tried to detail his life in a journal. As a young adult, he revisits the journal entries to figure out the truth about his troubled childhood friends Kayleigh (Amy Smart), Lenny (Elden Henson), and Tommy (William Lee Scott). When he discovers he can travel back in time in order to set things right, he tries to save his beloved friends. However, he finds out that relatively minor changes can make major problems for the future. The Butterfly Effect also stars Eric Stoltz, Ethan Suplee, and Melora Walters. The title was inspired by the story A Sound of Thunder by Ray Bradbury. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi

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Cast

Ashton Kutcher
as Evan Treborn
Amy Smart
as Kayleigh Miller
Melora Walters
as Andrea Treborn
Ethan Suplee
as Thumper
William Lee Scott
as Tommy Miller
Eric Stoltz
as Mr. Miller
John Patrick Amedori
as Evan (age 13)
Irene Gorovaia
as Kayleigh (age 13)
Kevin G. Schmidt
as Lenny (age 13)
Jesse James
as Tommy (age 13)
Logan Lerman
as Evan (age 7)
Sarah Widdows
as Kayleigh (age 7)
Jake Kaese
as Lenny at 7
Cameron Bright
as Tommy at 7
Lorena Gale
as Mrs. Boswell
Nathaniel DeVeaux
as Dr. Redfield
Kendall Cross
as Mrs. Kagan
John B. Lowe
as Professor Carter
Jesse Hutch
as Spencer
Andrew Olcott
as Andrea's New Husband
Sadie Lawrence
as Mrs. Halpern
Glenn Richards
as Pinching Customer
Sam Easton
as Theta Chi Pledge
Daniel Spink
as Senior Brother
June B. Wilde
as Waitress
Trevor Jones
as Sunnyvale Guard
Colby Chartrand
as Teen Punk
Shelly Schiavoni
as Mrs. Miller
Chapelle Jaffe
as Madame Helga
Scott Swanson
as Obstetrician
Kevan Ohtsji
as Anesthesiologist
Amy Esterle
as Gothic Coed
Magda Apanowicz
as Teen Punk Girl
Gary Little
as Wedding Priest
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Critic Reviews for The Butterfly Effect

All Critics (171) | Top Critics (37)

Nothing can save this repetitive bore. Dude, where's your memory?

Jan 29, 2004 | Rating: 1/4

Not one second of this bilge makes a lick of sense.

Jan 29, 2004
Observer
Top Critic

Kutcher is the wrong actor to anchor a psychological freak-out.

Jan 29, 2004 | Rating: C- | Full Review…

It's as if [Kutcher] decided that he would prove himself as a dramatic actor by trying out every clichéd serious role in the history of cinema.

Jan 27, 2004 | Full Review…
Slate
Top Critic

It's one of the most unpleasant Hollywood films in some time.

Jan 24, 2004 | Full Review…

A flawed but serviceable thriller.

Jan 23, 2004

Audience Reviews for The Butterfly Effect

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Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Built on one laughable implausibility after another this is a dark work that begs the recycle container ... but go along with what's unbelievable for a minute and after a minute you get a serviceable visit to the twilight zone, one where Kutcher's not a bad actor. And this is a serviceable sci-fi.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

½

A college student discovers he can go back in time and alter past events, but every change he makes brings about tragic unintended consequences in the new present. Pretty much "DONNIE DARKO for Dummies."

Greg S
Greg S

Super Reviewer

½

A boy suffering from memory lapses is diagnosed with a hereditary mental illness but later in life learns he is capable of revisiting previous moments in his life. A variant on the whole wish fulfillment concept we've all thought about where you imagine going back to a point in your own life and try to change things for the better, this hokey sci-fi involves the ever perfectly coiffed Ashton Kutcher revisiting his past with various disastrous consequences. I feared the worst as the beginning of the film was very soapy and teen-friendly, but as the tone darkens it gets progressively more interesting. Some of the character development (if you can call it that; Kutcher's personality undergoes drastic rewrites at regular intervals) can be a little difficult to swallow and it's very episodic, but if you're willing to accept some flaws in logic it's actually quite a decent little diversion. Considering it's essentially a vehicle for a teen heart throb The Butterfly Effect is surprisingly inventive and entertaining.

xGary Xx
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

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