Back to Back to the Future

backtofuture390_0Back to the Future
directed by Robert Zemeckis, Universal Pictures, 1985
This review was originally published in COSMOS Magazine.

Most likely, it’s a good thing that time travel hasn’t moved from science fiction to science fact. Any number of things could go wrong, and in Back to the Future they almost do.

Street-smart teenager Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) travels from 1985 to 1955 when his scientist friend ‘Doc’ Brown (Christopher Lloyd) is interrupted by terrorists (yes, really) just before his planned jump forward in time.

Marty is still finding his bearings when he accidentally disrupts his parents’ meeting, threatening his own existence. Fortunately, he locates the younger Doc and together they plan to reunite Marty’s parents and send him back to his own time.

After 27 years, Back to the Future is a double nostalgia fest – the ’80s music, slang and pop culture are as much of a treat as their ‘50s equivalents. The humour’s still fresh – I especially loved the UFO riffs and theStar Wars and Star Trek mashup.

The improbable relationship between Doc, the stereotypical mad professor, and Marty, the feckless adolescent, is as endearing as ever. And the souped-up DeLorean time machine and its flux capacitor are entrenched pop-culture symbols – because even if time travel might have disastrous consequences, as Doc says, why not do it with some style?

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