Christine Brown (Drag Me To Hell)
The Character: A bank loan officer desperate to appease her boss in order to get a promotion, she denies customer Sylvia Ganush a mortgage extension.
Reasons For Time Travel: After the gristle-faced oldie comes after her and curses a button on Christine’s coat condemning her to hell, she travels back one day and gives the old goat a fake mortgage extension along with the cursed button so the demon will go after the venomous pensioner.
Possible Paradoxes: Taking an object from the future and giving it to the old woman who originally cursed it in order for HER to be killed means there’s no definite origin for it....which came first, the button or the old hag? And if Ganush dies before she gives Christine the button, she’d never be able to bring it back to give it to her...
Linda Hanson (Premonition)
The Character: A housewife whose husband perishes in a traffic accident, winds up in an otherworldly loop linked to the week before he dies.
Reasons For Time Travel: When Jim dies at the end, she realises that if she hadn’t meddled in trying to prevent his death she wouldn’t have actually caused it. She goes back to the morning the police tell her husband has died and doesn’t interfere in the events that follow.
Possible Paradoxes: If she doesn’t get involved in trying to keep him alive, then he’ll likely still die (as he did the first time) but they’ll never make amends - and there’s the possibility of the loop starting again until the two realise their love for each other. Who knows with loops. They're so temperamental.
Benjamin Button (The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button)
The Character: A charming fellow born as an old man who suffers a rare disorder wherein he ages backwards.
Reasons For Time Travel: Towards the end of his life, Benjamin decides to have a moment of jocularity to make up for a lifetime full of struggle. He travels back to when he is younger to tell himself “This is what you’d have looked like if Mum hadn’t eaten all those genetically-modified gherkins.”
Possible Paradoxes: If the love of his life, Daisy sees the future Benjamin she might freak out and opt to not spend her life with him, which would leave Mr. Button alone to die before he comes back to play the prank on himself.
Deadpool (X-Men Origins: Wolverine)
The Character: Merc with the mouth Deadpool, as played by Ryan Reynolds in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
Reasons For Time Travel: Well, let's just say Deadpool's appearance in Origins isn't the most faithful comic-book adaptation we've ever seen (it makes Dolph Lungren's Punisher look canon).
We're sure the character would love to put right what once went wrong, by traveling back to before Origins was made and using his assassin skills to off everyone involved.
Possible Paradoxes: Deadpool breaks the fourth wall all the time in the comics, but we're not sure that would stand up in court if Ryan Reynolds was falsely accused of his crimes (they do look alike).
Diane Selwyn (Mulholland Drive)
The Character: A has-been actress unable to get over being dumped by rising star Camilla Rhodes, hires a hitman to take out her ex.
Reasons For Time Travel: The guilt she feels over having her ex murdered results in hallucinatory Borrower-sized octogenarians chasing her through her apartment.
Diane decides to go back in time and not take out the hit on Camilla.
Possible Paradoxes: If she goes back, she might become snagged in the dream world in which she is a bright-eyed gal called Betty.
As this is an entirely different reality, the only way to stop the hit would be to end her own life.
But would that work in Lynch’s dream-reality logic? Failing that, she’d probably stick a wig on Rita/Camilla and take her to an all-night mime club.
What characters would you like to see time travel? Tell us who, and what they'd do, in the comments below!
Daniel McCormick (Forever Young)
The Character: A 1938 test pilot who volunteers to be frozen after his girlfriend goes into a coma from which it’s unlikely she’ll recover.
Reasons For Time Travel: After being defrosted 53 years later, he discovers his girlfriend survived. He time travels back to when his wife went into a coma and never volunteers to be cryonically frozen.
Possible Paradoxes: If he returns from the future claiming that he wants to stay with his wife as he knows she lives, because of the ageing process due to the cryogenic chamber, he’d still die prematurely so either way they’ll never be able to spend their lives together. Damn you cryonic freezing!
Sam Bell's Clone (Moon)
The Character: A contractor on Lunar Industries lunar mining base Sarang who comes to learn he is a clone. One of many clones, in fact.
Reasons For Time Travel: Due to communications on the planet being jammed, and his short span clone-existence coming to an end, he travels back in time to Earth to see his wife and baby daughter.
Possible Paradoxes: If he assumes the place of the real Sam Bell on Earth then he would deteriorate within three years as all other clones have done and end up never sending himself on the original mission in the first place.
Clare DeTamble (The Time Traveler's Wife)
The Character: An artist who meets a time traveler called Henry at a young age. She falls in love with him, forever complicating her life.
Reasons For Time Travel: Because she is always left at home to pine and endure Henry’s time traveling exploits from a distance, she’s never able to wear the pants in the DeTamble household. Or have the chance to hone her lock picking skills. Why should he have all the fun?
Possible Paradoxes: If she time travels, then she might not end up meeting Henry. Or, she might meet him and he’d want a partner whose interests and hobbies differed more from his own. So she’d never end up with the desire to time travel.
Rachel Keller (The Ring)
The Character: A hard-nosed reporter investigating the origins of a mysterious videotape which results in a sopping wet girl emerging from the TV and killing anyone who watches it.
Reasons For Time Travel: Realising that the videotape is actually a curse-virus created by the girl Samara fuelled by her own premature demise, Rachel takes the tape back in time and makes the girl watch it.
Possible Paradoxes: If Samara watches the tape in the past, she’ll come out of the TV and technically kill herself, therefore she’ll be unable to create the curse-virus videotape that Rachel brings back to make her watch.
The Character: A brainy maths student who wakes up in a square room with a bunch of total strangers who then figure out a bizarre way of escaping the room.
Reasons For Time Travel: After learning by the end of their experience, that if they had just stayed in the same room they’d have been exactly where they needed to be to escape, she travels back to tell them to get comfy. Possibly play I Spy for a few hours.
Possible Paradoxes: There’s the chance that if she did go back and warn them, the characters would be so freaked out by a bloodied rambling woman telling them to stay where they are, they’d all go nuts (much earlier than they do) and kill her. If she is dead then there’s no way they’d be able to escape to the next room as she helped decode the co-ordinates, so they’d have stayed in the same spot and found their way out. But if she’s dead then she can’t travel back in time to tell them...
Robert Neville (I Am Legend)
The Character: A military virologist trapped in a future New York City wherein a cancer cure has turned people into pale-skinned neanderthals who eat human flesh.
Reasons For Time Travel: To prevent the virus from spreading, Robert travels forward in time to when he finally hits on a cure and brings it back to the moment the pandemic takes hold.
Possible Paradoxes: If he does go forward, there’s no guarantee he will have found a cure, and the version of him traveling forward wouldn’t know which year to go to anyway. If he doesn’t stay in the past he won’t be there to eventually find the cure so he could end up getting attacked by the Dark Seekers.
Rose Dawson (Titanic)
The Character: An upper crust oldie who enjoys throwing priceless jewellery into the ocean. Oh, she survived the Titanic.
Reasons For Time Travel: In her wizened old age, she realises that if she’d just made a little space, Jack would have been able to stay out of the water, so Rose goes back in time and pulls him onto the door.
Possible Paradoxes: If Jack survives, the romanticised nostalgia Rose has for their time together would turn into a real life relationship which had the potential to fail due to her social status. If she doesn’t stay with him then by the time she reaches old age she won’t go back to rescue him and he’ll die and she’ll wonder what would have happened if she’d just made room for him...
Sarah Connor (Terminator 2: Judgment Day)
The Character: A badass visionary locked up in the psychiatric hospital run by face lickers after blowing up a computer factory.
Reasons For Time Travel: She goes back in time to stop her lover Kyle Reese from being killed by the first Terminator so her son, John has a father while she plans how to inject Dr. Silberman with drain cleaner.
Possible Paradoxes: If she goes back and Kyle doesn’t die, then John will grow up with his own father and then as an adult it’s unlikely he’ll want to send him back in time. Where he knows he’ll die.
Phil Connors (Groundhog Day)
The Character: A curmudgeon weatherman who finds little joy in visiting a small town to celebrate their annual Groundhog Day and finds himself doomed to repeat the day over and over.
Reasons For Time Travel: To avoid getting stuck in the loop, Phil travels forward to the next day when he and his boss, Rita are happily smitten.
Possible Paradoxes: He might end up just going to the next technical morning which is still the same day. However, should he succeed and move on to the proper tomorrow, he won’t learn anything he would have learned during the time he spent in the loop, and may be doomed to repeat the day he ends up in.
David Drayton (The Mist)
The Character: A graphic artist who takes a trip to the supermarket after a thunderstorm, ends up trapped inside after a mist surrounds the building. Which is full of monsters.
Reasons For Time Travel: As he, his son and two elderly friends escape the supermarket to find the monsters are still rampant, they decide on group suicide with David on trigger duty. Just as he is about to kill himself, the Army arrive and decimate the monsters. To rectify this, David travels back a few minutes and doesn’t shoot anyone and they just wait it out.
Possible Paradoxes: In those few minutes the car could have been attacked by a monster, causing everyone far more grisly deaths. Either way it’s all a bit grim for David.
The Character: A weepy mother who heads out on a boating trip only to be caught in an inescapable Mobius strip of events. All whilst wearing wedges.
Reasons For Time Travel: Living in a permanent loop of murder, blood and insanity is a terrifying realisation. She time travels to the day before when her friend Gregg asks her to go on an innocent boat ride. And tell him she’s staying in to wash her hair.
Possible Paradoxes: It doesn’t really matter if she says no to him or not, there’s about a million versions of her repeating the pattern so she may as well join in the fun. The more the merrier. Although she probably wouldn't see it that way.
Seth Brundle (The Fly)
The Character: An overexcited scientist who creates a teleportation device. Has a penchant for tweed jackets and Geena Davis.
Reasons For Time Travel: After teleporting with a pesky fly causing him to be spliced genetically with the winged thang, he goes back to tell himself not to go through the teleporter while drunk.
Possible Paradoxes: If he sees himself from the future he might abandon the plan to teleport, and focus on making a time machine instead. This would make it impossible for his fly-self to come back and warn him. Also, goodness knows what kind of damage a man-fly might have on space-time.
Joel Barish (Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind)
The Character: A shy withdrawn chap whose job remains unknown but his scribblings suggest he works as an artist.
Reasons For Time Travel: Going through the pain of having all memories of his lover erased while simultaneously experiencing them would be enough to warrant a trip back in time to tell himself to not go through with it!
Possible Paradoxes: As sad as it is, he needs the actual experience of reliving his time with her to make him realise he loves her. If he doesn’t do it, the Clem in his mind won’t whisper “Meet me in Montauk”, he’ll never get on the train and bump into her and they’ll never get that second chance.
David Aames (Vanilla Sky)
The Character: A publishing tycoon who cannot deal with his disfigurement after a car accident so chooses to enter into a lucid cryonic sleep which has a sneaking similarity to his actual life.
Reasons For Time Travel: Upon realising his entire relationship with Sofia never actually happened bar the one perfect night they spent together, he travels back to tell his bonkers ex, Julie he doesn’t want to go for a spin in her car.
Possible Paradoxes: Blowing off Julie again would further enrage her, and she’d probably go nuts, killing both him and Sofia. He’d then re-enter his cryonic lucid dream and the whole thing would play out again in an endless loop for true love. Possibly with Starship’s “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now” instead of Sigur Ros.
Karen Eiffel (Stranger Than Fiction)
The Character: A chain smokin’ author with a knack for offing her characters at the end of her books.
Reasons For Time Travel: Encountering one of her characters in the flesh and knowing she’s killed real people affects her so much she goes back in time and rewrites her novels so no one dies.
Possible Paradoxes: She may never become as successful if she changes her writing formula, so never reaches that point wherein she creates and meets Harold Crick and realises he’s an actual human being.
David Norris (The Adjustment Bureau)
The Character: An honest good guy politician at the mercy of The Adjustment Bureau, who threaten to revoke his free will.
Reasons For Time Travel: Going forward in time four years to the moment on the rooftop with love interest Elise when The Chairman of the Bureau restarts their plan and allows them to be together.
Save all that pesky waiting, wouldn’t it?
Possible Paradoxes: His space-time shenanigans could cause a fuse to blow in conjunction with the workings of the Bureau, or there’s the possibility that his absence in the previous four years would enrage the Bureau who’d give him a lobotomy.
Butch Coolidge (Pulp Fiction)
The Character: A tough-as-nails boxer who reneges on an agreement with gangster Marsellus Wallace.
Reasons For Time Travel: Heading to World War II to retrieve his heirloom gold watch from his Grandfather eliminates the need for him to have to risk his life sneaking back to his apartment to get it. And he’s now got time for blueberry pancakes.
Possible Paradoxes: If he goes back, then he’ll never have to go to his apartment to pick it up after Fabienne forgets to.
Therefore he’ll never bump into Vincent Vega and blow him away, and could end up getting shot himself or worse, come to loggerheads with Marsellus.
Leonard Shelby (Memento)
The Character: An amnesia victim out to track down his wife’s murderer, who covers his body in tattooed clues which may or may not be helpful.
Reasons For Time Travel: To go back to before his memory is damaged and convince himself not to get any tattoos.
Or get one stating “All of your other tattoos are lies.”
Possible Paradoxes: He might decide to not get any tattoos at all and therefore never track down the first, real John G who’s responsible for his wife’s death.
Also, the presence of a tattoo informing him all of his body art is itself a paradox, which he could choose to ignore anyway.
The lesson here being: don’t ink and drive (through time.)
Luke Skywalker (The Empire Strikes Back)
The Character: A Jedi apprentice turned Lieutenant Commander for the Rebel Alliance with serious Daddy issues.
Reasons For Time Travel: Seeing as his Dad is the reason for pretty much a galactic glut of bad events happening, it might be an idea to go back in time and take out his Dad when he’s just a little sandy-haired kid called Anakin.
Possible Paradoxes: If he goes back in time to kill Anakin, Luke will never be born and therefore can’t go back to kill his Dad, so he IS born, allowing him to go back in time to kill his Dad... Our brains hurt.
Alex Wyler (The Lake House)
The Character: A rugged architect who enters into correspondence with a woman living in his house two years into the future.
Reasons For Time Travel: After meeting the woman of his dreams, only to discover she’s two years in the future, it’d be a trifle convenient to not spend years of his life waiting to meet her.
Possible Paradoxes: If he travels forward skipping out the two years he has to wait, they won’t have time to get to know each other.
So she would have no reason to be interested in him if he turned up at that point, as she hardly knows him.
Ellen Ripley (Alien 3)
The Character: A Flight Officer who left Earth on a routine mission with the crew of the Nostromo, ends up battling with a xenomorph, goes to sleep for 57 years then wages war on the alien race again. Twice.
Reasons For Time Travel: On the cusp of death she opts to travel back to spend time with her daughter, who she told she’d be back for her birthday, but turns out she’s now deceased after living well into old age.
Possible Paradoxes: If she goes back to her daughter’s party, the Queen Alien’s appearance could top any stripper-out-of-a-cake birthday shenanigans and burst out of Ripley’s chest.
It would kill her, and no doubt lots of shocked mothers, rendering Ripley unable to go on the mission on the Nostromo and subsequently never able to bring it back.
Lester Burnham (American Beauty)
The Character: A 40-something who quits his office job, smokes weed and refuses to take any more crap from his wife as he realises life is actually worth more than what we’re forced to believe.
Reasons For Time Travel: Realising life is precious is a pretty important reason, so he travels back in order to stop Col. Frank Fitts from shooting him.
Possible Paradoxes: If Lester never dies, then he never reaches the afterlife which is where his voiceover story originates from so he can never begin the film.
Bit meta, this one.
The Narrator (Fight Club)
The Character: An IKEA-lovin’ corporate drone who writes haikus at work and beats himself up in car parks.
Reasons For Time Travel: As liberating as Tyler Durden is for the Narrator, the blatant destruction and loss of life for which the the Narrator is ultimately responsible for could have been handled a little differently.
All right, it’s so Bob doesn’t die.
Possible Paradoxes: If he jumps back in time to just before he meets Tyler, there’s a chance he’ll arrive to a moment wherein Tyler was in control of his body.
This could cause either a) a meltdown in psychosis which melds the two personalities in some hitherto unheard of time-travel personality fusion or b) Tyler becomes more motivated and wipes out all traces of the Narrator making it impossible for him to come back in time.
Cameron Frye (Ferris Buellers Day Off)
The Character: A teenager who struggles with his parents, the future, college, girls.
Ah well, at least he’s got his dependable best friend, Ferris.
Reasons For Time Travel: Goes back in time to stop Ferris from taking his Dad’s Ferrari into the city for the day.
Possible Paradoxes: If Cameron goes back to stop him, then he’ll never have the “best day” of his life, and subsequently never fully realise the fear his father lauds over him with regards to the car.
Also, a very strong chance of Ferris reconvincing him it’s a good idea.
T-Rex (Jurassic Park)
The Character: A tiny-armed terror who bypassed 65 million years of extinction to become the star attraction at a theme park who eats most of the guests.
Reasons For Time Travel: Missing her real family, T-Rex opts to go back to see if she can track down some distant genetic relatives.
Possible Paradoxes: Arriving to find her distant Mother is actually an overweight frog called Bertha, in a fit of rage T-Rex eats her Mother and all of her froggy friends.
The future of frogs now hanging in the balance, T-Rex might never be born at all if that amphibian DNA doesn’t make it through the ages.
What characters would you like to see time travel? Tell us who, and what they'd do, in the comments below!