10 Sci-Fi Movies That Forced You To Answer Impossible Questions

9. Would You Kill Baby Hitler If Given The Chance? - Looper

Looper Rainmaker
TriStar Pictures

Time travel movies inherently raise questions about the morality of re-visiting the past, and the same question inevitably always gets asked - if you could go back in time and kill Hitler as a baby, would you?

This is given a fascinating treatment in Rian Johnson's cult classic sci-fi Looper, where an older version of protagonist Joe (Bruce Willis) travels back in time in an attempt to murder a young boy, Cid (Pierce Gagnon), who in Joe's original timeline grows up to become a tyrant known as the Rainmaker, and ends up killing Joe's wife.

And so, it begs the question - if you had the tools to travel back in time, would you kill Hitler as a youngster in the hope of preventing the Holocaust?

It's an endlessly complex question because, of course, none of us can know how the world would change with Hitler's death. His demise alone certainly wouldn't prevent World War II, and it's entirely possible a more rational figurehead would simply take his place and make things even worse.

But there's also the strong possibility you'd save a lot of lives by preventing the most infamous genocide in human history.

On the other hand, Looper itself comes down on the side that a young person's nature can be changed as they haven't been shaped by their life experiences yet.

Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) manages to prevent the death of Cid's mother (Emily Blunt), which in a causal sense is implied to alter Cid's path and stop him from becoming the Rainmaker.

So, would you murder baby Hitler in cold blood, leave well alone, or maybe just make sure he gets admitted to Vienna's Academy of Fine Arts instead? Decisions.


Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.