Back to the Future Trilogy Rereview

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The three Back to the Future flicks have been on hbogo.com and I felt compelled to watch them. Here are the big things I remembered about each flick and how I feel about them now having re-watched them:

First

  • Skateboard while holding on to cars — still makes me want to do it.
  • McFly playing Johnny B. Goode — still makes me want to do it.
  • Ridiculous scene where Chuck Berry’s cousin holds the phone up to said scene — makes me cringe
  • Sweet model of the street / car catching fire — loved it even more because of the line “this is just a primitive model, I didn’t have time to make it to scale”
  • “I am your density” — not really featured as much as I remember
  • Libyan terrorists — as racist as ever
  • George’s laugh — so spectacular

Second

  • Laughable depiction of the future featuring Jaws 17 — It’s bad. Really bad. And it’s suppose to be 2015. Oops.
  • Bizarre alternate 1985 stuff — Still really bizarre

Third

  • Stove door vest — Liked it
  • Mad Dog Tannen being insane — He actually is not that insane and might be the best Tannen in the series
  • Flying train — Man did it look not so good, Al. The giant magnets were the worst part. They looked to be made of plywood.

So what stuck out on my rereviews?

First Flick — Good stuff

  • Doc Brown is a great character.  I particularly enjoyed his “you’re in for some serious shit” line as there’s not a lot of cussing in these movies.1
  • George McFly was “watching birds” in the tree.. brilliant.. and I enjoyed McFly’s reaction even more (“He’s a Peeping Tom!”).

First Flick — Bad stuff

  • Pretty much any of the cutesy stuff they tried to do — Marty is the reason why Goldie runs for Mayor, Chuck Berry ripped Marty off with Johnny B. Goode, etc.
  • Lorraine as alcoholic — when I saw her drinking at the beginning of the movie I figured she was self-medicating for the shitty life she had, but it’s setup that she was a boozehound long before her life went off the rails (i.e. when she got with McFly).
The original movie holds up really well. There are some positively 80s things that are eyesores, but you can’t really fault the flick for that.

Second Flick — Good stuff

  • The scenes where they revisit 1955 are pretty dope. I had actually completely forgotten about this… alls I remembered was the “future” and the apocalyptic 1985. I guess the effects that they used to get multiple Martys and Biffs on the screen at the same time were revolutionary. Some of them hold up. Some of them don’t.
  • Flea as Needles
Second Flick — Bad stuff
  • At the end of the first movie Doc whisks Marty and his girl Jennifer to the future to right a wrong. But when they get there they pretty much ditch Jennifer as soon as they can. I guess they couldn’t figure out a good story that involved all three of them and dumped her. And that’s fine by me.
  • The whole “chicken” thing… there is such a big deal made of it through the second and third movies but there was NOTHING about it in the first one.
The second flick was overall better than I remember with all the 1955 stuff.. but I didn’t remember it being very good…
Third Flick — Good stuff
  • “We.. may.. have.. to BLAST!”
  • The three saloon guys.. particularly the one with THAT voice.
Third Flick — Bad stuff
  • The entire thing is a little slapsticky.
  • The western-style take on the main theme played with a jaw harp.
  • Doc Brown is REALLY over the top.
  • “Great Scott!” / “This is heavy!” role-reversal when “Clint Eastwood” appears on the tombstone picture.
  • The repeating-scenes-in-a-different-time schtick got old real fast (see: Marty waking up in a dark room with Lea Thompson comforting him and saying he’s in the year XXXX)

Overall the third movie is not good. The Doc Brown in love thread isn’t very interesting because Clara is an incredibly dull character.

  1. and the line is delivered by 1955 Doc Brown… was that even a word then? It must have been some serious shit to say shit.

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Jimmy D
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the “serious shit” line is FANTASTIC. doc brown dead pans it perfectly. Obviously modern family is awesome with him running the show