Back To The Future Appreciation Thread, 35 year Anniversary

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by David Fischer, Jun 22, 2020.

  1. David Fischer

    David Fischer Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Coming up on the anniversary of the original release date of Back To The Future, released 35 years ago, July 3rd 1985. From reviewing the threads on this forum, this is definitely one of the most beloved and favorite movies among Hoffman members and wider pop culture, at least of my generation.

    I was 5 years old when it was released, and didn't see it in the theater. I didn't realize the "To Be Continued" at the end was not in the original theatrical release, but only added onto the VHS release once they realized the huge box office success could be parlayed a trilogy. I saw it when it first came out on VHS at 6 years old and remembering being so confused about the time travel plot (my 6 year old brain wasn't ready for it yet), but was so obsessed with Marty McFly. I became obsessed with skateboarding as well, and got a Back To The Future skateboard for my birthday a couple years later. I was already a huge Huey Lewis fan as a young kid, as the Sports Album was my older sisters' favorite. Huey being instrumental in this film only added the appeal. And it had everything to do with 80s pop culture - jeans, nike sneakers, Pepsi Free, Tab, music, walkmans, skateboards, guitars, burger king.... It constantly re-aired on cable TV in the 80s and remember watching it all the time.

    Crazy to think the script kept getting rejected for about 4 years before it was picked up. And it is one of the iconic 80s movies that has aged really well. It does have the Frank Capra "It's A Wonderful Life" type feel good storybook ending and could be the peak time travel scifi movie. The 5 weeks of wasted shooting with Eric Stoltz and recasting with Michael J Fox (who shot at night due to his daytime Family Ties gig) is well known, but also interesting is that Jon Lithgow was one of the first choices for Doc Brown. Lea Thompson was superb in this film (and I like a lot of young kids had a crush on 80s Lea), and this one a one-hit wonder for Thomas F Wilson as Biff. Great cameos, and said to see Claudia Wells as Jennifer Parker was great (sad to see she had to back out of the rest of the trilogy due to her mother getting cancer). Another great cameos are George DiCenzo as Sam Baines ("He's an idiot. Comes from upbringing. His parents are probably idiots, too. Lorraine, you ever have a kid who acts that way, I'll disown you.") and loved the 50s Marvin Berry & The Starlighters band at the Enchanment Under the Sea dance.

    This was peak Michael J Fox - he was such a superstar at this point on one of the best TV shows and then the highest grossing movie of the year - he was only around 5' 5" but was believable as the cool/slick/athletic/tough kid but also had the humor and physical comedy down for the Marty McFly role. The success and reverence of this film as only grown over the years. It doubled the next highest grossing films in 1985 (which was Rambo 2 and Rocky IV - shoutout to 80s Stallone, another pop culture icon of that era). In 1985, it was in the #1 box office movie for almost 12 straight weeks in 1985, only to be bounced a couple weeks in to #2 for one week because ET was re-released in theaters that summer July 19, 1985. Robert Zemeckis really knocked this movie out of the park.

    What are your favorite lines, scenes, moments, memories of this film?

    Best scene: tough call... for me it is either Marty arrives in 1955 with Mister Sandman playing and him being awestruck about what is happening to him... or the Enchantment Under The Sea dance where Marty if fading when the red-headed guy cuts in and Marty is fading into extinction with Earth Angel also getting drowned out, then George knocks him and cuts to the close up of Marvin Berry belting out Earth Angel louder and George waves to Marty and Marty waves back wiggling his fingers.... Classic!

    Best quote: this is a tough one but always quote "Say hi to your mom for me" from Biff....
    Underrated scene: Marty has dinner with his 1955 grandparents... bringing in the TV and commenting he saw the Honeymooners on a rerun and he has 2 TVs and asking about Doc Brown's address and mentions John F Kennedy drive.... Great underrated Scene!

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    Last edited: Jun 22, 2020
  2. MikaelaArsenault

    MikaelaArsenault Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    REELZ is having an episode of Behind Closed Doors about this on Sunday at 8:00 PM.
     
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  3. David Fischer

    David Fischer Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    The Enchanment Under The Sea Dance was genius

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    One reviewer captured the innocence, tension, and suspense of the scene:
    "The suspense and intensity of the scene is executed perfectly. When Marty starts to hit those wrong notes and realizes what is going on, the score starts to become extremely unsettling, muffling the calls from Lorraine to sound haunting while cutting back to Marty’s hand that is slowly disappearing. As the music gets louder and louder, the sound of Lorraine’s calls and the boy’s evil laugh who stole her away from George heightens. At this point “Earth Angel” has completely stopped playing in the scene to show Marty’s concentration on the terrible situation happening before him. Finally when George approaches Lorraine and the other guy the intense music comes to a halt and the audience can hear “Earth Angel” in the background again. When George finally pushes him down one of the classic “Back to the Future” theme scores starts to heighten as it reaches it’s peak and stops the minute George looks directly into Lorraine’s eyes. “Earth Angel” starts to get louder and louder until George and Lorraine finally kiss and the climax of the song begins right as their lips touch. The music comes back to its full volume as the rest of the incredible and magical scene plays out. The camera then zooms out on the two of them dancing in the middle of the floor surrounded by everyone else as the last note closes the song. The way the filmmakers put together the entire scene, music, camera works, and sound editing creates a scene where all of these elements mesh so well together.

    The emotion that this scene evokes is like no other, which is also why it is brilliant as well. The entire movie was leading up to this moment, whether or not Marty would find a way to bring his parents together. The fate of Marty and his siblings is on the line as well as the futures for his parents (and if his parents never married there is no telling what each of their lives would have been like). The filmmakers did an amazing job placing all of the stakes and emotions on this one scene, which makes it feel that much more triumphant when things work out, not as planned, but for the better. I don’t know about anyone else but this is the one scene that makes me smile like never before every single time I watch it. Whether or not I am watching it after seeing the entire movie or just watching the clip on my computer, I feel the exact same joyful emotions. It takes a great filmmaker to create a scene that evokes so much emotion even if you haven’t seen the movie play out beforehand.

    As I said, greatest scene ever." The Genius Behind The "Enchantment Under the Sea" Dance Scene
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2020
  4. SSoundLtd

    SSoundLtd Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Utah
    If you are in the Burbank California area you can go to the Burger King that Marty rides past as he catches a ride while leaving Doc Brown's place.
    Love Back to the Future so I geeked out when a co worker said the Burger King from the movie was within walking distance of our hotel while overnighting there for work.
    "It looks like an airplane...without wings!"
    "Lorraine if you ever have a kid that acts that way I'll disown you"
    "I have your car towed all the way to your house and all you got for me is light beer?"
    "Hey you get your damn hands off her. Do you really think I outta swear?"
    Such a great movie.
     
  5. musicfan37

    musicfan37 Senior Member

    Awesome movie! One of my all time favorites.
     
  6. eric777

    eric777 Astral Projectionist

    Location:
    Tennessee
    I saw all three films on opening day and would return multiple times to the theater to see them again. These films are some of my all time favorite films ever. I have the DVD box set and I watch them rather often.
     
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  7. David Fischer

    David Fischer Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Shout out to cameos from Jason Hervey (Wonder Years fame) and Maia Brewton (Adventures in Babysitting fame)...as Milton and Sally Baines

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  8. Brodnation

    Brodnation The Future Never Dies because Tomorrow Never Knows

    Location:
    Canada
    And coming to 4K as-well! The Blu-rays were a bit of a visual disappointment but I have high hopes for the 4K release. I saw a 2015 30th anniversary showing at my local cinema and it looked spectacular so I know it can be done!
     
  9. David Fischer

    David Fischer Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Random question of the film: At the end of the movie, why don't Marty's parents recognize that their son looks exactly like Calvin Klein that hooked them up in 1955? How come Marty's parent don't recognize him 30 years later?

    One point made is they only knew him for 1 week, 30 years ago and maybe they don't remember what Calvin Klein looked like? Or they just skipped over that part. Not that it breaks the film, but always wondered that. Any other explanations?
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2020
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  10. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    I watch the BTTF franchise at least once a year...with much enjoyment!
     
  11. David Fischer

    David Fischer Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    The film score by Alan Silvestri ranks up there with the best of them, even the best of the John Williams themes of the era

     
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  12. MikaelaArsenault

    MikaelaArsenault Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    What’s funny is that when my parents and I were watching this movie the other day, they wanted to know who did the film score especially my mom.

    She said Danny Elfman, and doesn’t even know who Alan Silvestri is.
     
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  13. Mr. H

    Mr. H Forum Resident

    One of my all time favorites. Crispin Glover is brilliant here.
     
  14. swandown

    swandown Under Assistant West Coast Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR
     
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  15. Shoehorn with Teeth

    Shoehorn with Teeth Romans 6:23

    Location:
    Missouri
    A terrific film and one of the best trilogies ever made. Thank goodness Hollywood hasn't had a chance to mess it up yet!
     
  16. Give them time. Give them time.
     
  17. It's best to suspend belief when dealing with time travel.
     
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  18. eric777

    eric777 Astral Projectionist

    Location:
    Tennessee
    These films had a lot of plot holes. My favorite is from part 2. Doc Brown tells Marty after returning to an alternate 1985 that if they go back into the future, they will not go back to the same future they were originally. Instead it would be an alternate future. If they could not go back to the same future they were in originally then how did Biff do it after going back to 1985 and handing himself the book? It seems to me that as soon as he handed himself the book the new future would have transformed from the one he came from and become the one that Doc Brown warned Marty about.
     
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  19. mj_patrick

    mj_patrick Forum Resident

    Location:
    Elkhart, IN, USA
    When they make the 4K blu-rays available, I will instantly buy them.

    As time goes on, I am personally regarding these films with among the very best and most cherished blockbuster films.
     
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  20. SSoundLtd

    SSoundLtd Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Utah
    Apparently the creators have said his parents don't remember him because their interaction was somewhat brief and then 30 years past so they simply don't put it together. One fan theory I read said they do remember him which is why when George gives him the book he quotes back to him if you put your mind to it you can accomplish anything. There are more theories out there and it is fun to speculate.
     
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  21. greelywinger

    greelywinger That T-Rex Guy

    Location:
    Dayton, Ohio USA
  22. team2

    team2 Forum Resident

    The original is probably my favorite film ever, next to 2001. Seeing BTTF when it came out in the summer of 1985 (right when I turned 15) was perfect timing, since '85 really was the Present! For those my age, 1955 was the far past. Now I can't believe we're five years past 2015!

    I started this thread last year about the deleted scenes showing up in some of the release prints during the original theatrical run: Back To The Future: Deleted Scenes In Some 1985 Release Prints?
     
  23. team2

    team2 Forum Resident

    Another plot hole I noticed concerns Doc's tombstone in 1955. Finding it was what inspired Marty to go back to 1885 to save Doc in the first place. When Doc is saved, the tombstone disappears from the photo -- so now, how will Marty know about Doc's death to go back to save him? Those darn paradoxes...
     
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  24. eric777

    eric777 Astral Projectionist

    Location:
    Tennessee
    Yeah, I had not thought about that but you are right. I think that many of these plot holes serve the films more then they hurt them. I don’t believe they would have been as good without them.

    That’s just my opinion anyway.
     
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  25. swandown

    swandown Under Assistant West Coast Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR
    It's the "Bill and Ted Paradox" -- the future was not transformed because Doc & Marty were ultimately successful in going back in time to reverse the damage done by Biff.
     
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