Ed Burns, A Sound of Thunder
Credit: THE SOUND OF THUNDER: Murray Close

The evolution of a turkey is a wonderful thing to behold. A Sound of Thunder, for instance, is so perfect in its awfulness, it makes one seriously consider a theory of unintelligent design. The designers (in this case Battlefield Earth producer Elie Samaha and Timecop director Peter Hyams) first selected one of the most oft-copied science-fiction stories ever written. (In the Ray Bradbury original, a time-traveling hunter inadvertently pollutes the timeline and wreaks havoc on the present.) By now, of course, Hollywood has pillaged and repillaged these ideas, so this low-budget effort comes off looking like Timecop 3: Jurassic Stargate.

Next, the makers shaped a ridiculous cast. Edward Burns (as a ”big-time scientist”) brings a nice plywood smugness, but the real accolades go to Ben Kingsley, in full ham-and-cheese mode as a badly toupeed industrialist. But he must compete, for sheer silliness, with the film’s treatment of evolution: For Sound, natural selection begins and ends with giant monkey-lizards. Random chance create a movie this beautifully stupid? Ha! Don’t try to make a monkey-lizard out of me.

A Sound of Thunder
  • Movie
  • 103 minutes
  • Peter Hyams