In the time-travel romance movie "Somewhere in Time", a young playwright from 1972 uses an old pocket-watch to mystically travel back to 1912 and meet an actress he has fallen in love with from old photos. The film has a paradox where:

The actress he loves is the old woman who gives him the watch in 1972, at the beginning of the film, and which gives him the idea to time-travel.

When he gets to 1912, the actress' manager is a middle-aged man (portrayed by Christopher Plummer) who is not only super-protective of her, but also told her that she would meet a young man and fall in love. Throughout the film, the manager than tries to keep them apart, supposedly for the woman's "own good".

I remember when watching this originally, I expected the manager to be an older version of the playwright character who was trying to change his OWN past. However, that can't be since

the young playwright dies after returning to 1972.

So, my question is WHO is the manager (really) and HOW did he know what was going to happen in the (relative to 1912) near future?

  • Just a mild point -- He doesn't use the watch to travel; he uses a form of Self Hypnosis. – K-H-W Jan 9 '15 at 20:48
  • @K-H-W - well, true, but the watch is an important element of it. – Omegacron Jan 9 '15 at 20:48
  • I THINK, if I remember, someone for-told someone coming into her life and taking her away from her career, but I haven't seen the movie in forever. If I can dig up a copy, I'll see if I can confirm it. – K-H-W Jan 9 '15 at 20:49
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    Does predicting that a pretty young woman will fall in love with a young man really require much foresight? – KSmarts Jan 9 '15 at 20:51
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    @K-H-W The film is the main example provided on Wikipedia's page on the bootstrap paradox – KSmarts Jan 9 '15 at 21:07

If I think normally without any complexity, Robinson had tricked Ellis that he was known about her future so that he could get control over her. Robinson had always known that she was a young women and one day a man of her dreams would come and marry her, In that way he had assumed that he would spoil her acting carrier. He had told her that. That's why she had asked: "Is it you?". When she had asked Robinson if he was the one, he had answered: "Only you can say it for certain"

  • So, basically he's who he appears to be, it's just that he's a manipulative SOB. I'll buy that. – Omegacron Jun 26 '15 at 18:24

My opinion is that he did it for selfish reasons. He knew that if she ever became rich and famous, he would get his own cut of her money. But if she fell in love and let that take precedence over her career, he wouldn't be so lucky. So he wanted to thwart any budding romance she had, but he also knew that she had talked to psychics who told her that she would one day meet the man who would change her life forever, and that it would be someone from the future, hence her interest in the book about time travel. It's indicated that Robinson himself believes that this will happen and that he will need to thwart such a person. That's why he often tries to make Elise believe that Richard is not "the one", although Elise believes he is. Thus why Robinson says to Richard "I know you came here to ruin her".

Also, it may or may not be possible that Robinson had studied time travel himself, and found a way to travel into the future. If so, he could travel into the future and obtain a 1979 penny, which he knew would send Richard back to the future and separate him from Elise. Then when he had the tugs tie up Richard and put him into the barn, one of then could discreetly slip the penny into one of his pockets.

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    Hi, welcome to SF&F. This seems to be very similar to the accepted answer, except for your hypothesis about Robinson studying time travel, for which you should provide evidence. Please read How to Answer. – DavidW May 14 at 20:47
  • In addition to what DavidW said, note that you can add said evidence (quotes, clips etc) with an edit. – Jenayah May 14 at 21:01

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