Time Travel Tuesday: Time Travel in movies – Source Code

I finally got around to watching Source Code tonight. Spoilers abound, so don’t click if you haven’t seen it (or at least, if you don’t want the movie spoiled):

After watching Source Code and not being able to take my eyes from the screen, I have no idea why I had never watched it before. It combines two of my favorite concepts – the “Groundhog Day” idea of living a set time period over and over, in this case eight minutes, and the many worlds theory (alternate timeline/universe, parallel timeline/universe, alternate histories, etc). It also showed the idea of life after death – the main character lived on, in the alternate reality, after they disconnected his life support in the original life (Life Prime?).

The main issue I had with the movie – what happened to the soul/consciousness of the body he was inhabiting? Did Sean Fentress get booted out of existence from the moment the military sent Captain Stevens into his body, a la Quantum Leap (another favorite of mine, so no wonder I loved the movie)? In Quantum Leap, there was an exchange. In this movie, the passengers of the train were all assumed dead. Stevens proved, in the end, that they were not – he saved them all and created an alternate reality. He potentially created hundreds of alternate realities, depending on how many times they sent him back – just none where the he and the train survived, until the end. There was one other where the girl survived. But – my point – what happened to Sean Fentress? The only logical conclusion is that he truly did die, and Captain Stevens’ “reward” for finally saving the train was to live again. The good of the many, I suppose…

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