Where We're Going, We Don't Need Roads

Back to the Future II (1989)
The time has come for my thoughts on Back to the Future Part II.

As a child, what interested me most about Part II, was definitely the trip Marty and Doc take to the future, more specifically: the year 2015. Crazy that we're now only 5 years away from that, eh? I always love seeing filmmaker's visions of what the future holds, and Back to the Future II's is probably the most fun take I've ever seen. Throughout the years, I always hoped that the advancing technology would somehow produce flying cars, hoverboards, and mini microwave pizzas that instantly turned into giant pizzas, to say the least. After watching the movie I came across these two really interesting articles:

11 Things Back to the Future II Got Right, and
11 Things They Got Wrong in predicting the future

I would also say all of the actors aged better than their future counterparts too!

Now, as to the actual film. Like I said, it had been years since I'd seen it and seeing it again was really fun. But when comparing it to the original, it's flaws are evident. It simply does not have quite the same magic that the first one did. The sequel marks the departure of Crispin Glover, as well as the original Jennifer. Elizabeth Shue's Jennifer doesn't really fit in that well and George McFly is missed. I read that much of the writing of the plot in this film was written around this.

According to writers Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, Back to the Future was never intended to have a sequel. The last line of the original movie was just a joke. A joke that actually had them in a corner when writing the sequel. They said, if they knew there was going to be a sequel, they certainly never would have had Jennifer enter the car too. That's why she basically passes out as soon as the movie begins. And then they had to come up with a decent plot that involved their kids. You can tell that there wasn't really quite the same care in creating the script of Back to the Future 2 as there was with the original.

While the first film has everything tying together and working towards one end, BTTF2 is really all over the place. It is quite a frenetic film, which can be both good and bad. There's so much constantly going on and depending on the viewer this can either be great fun or it can be pretty confusing. But for this viewer, I think Back to the Future 2 is non-stop fun. It certainly is not nearly as solid as the first, but it is still a pretty good movie. I also think the plot with the sports almanac is a pretty cool way to show that even though time travel is such a cool idea, if the power got into the wrong hands, how much evil could be produced. One final thought before quotes, keep an eye out for Michael J. Fox playing his own daughter, and also Elijah and Billy Z. (like my last entry mentioned.)

That's about as funny as a screen door on a battleship. - Biff

No, I know; you *did* send me back to the future. But I'm back - I'm back *from* the future -Marty

There's something very familiar about all this.
-Old Biff


Joey said...

I find the second movie irritating. Going back to the 50's to get the book and then trying to get back to the future (again!) seemed to close to a re-do of the first movie. At least that portion of the movie seemed all too familiar. It was similar in that way to Home Alone 2.

Emily said...

I can agree with that. Especially since with a time machine they have so many options of places they could go, it kind of feels like a waste to go to the 50's again. That's why I included Biff's quote...it's ironic because that is definitely one of the flaws. Maybe they should have gone to the 60's at least.

Laurie & Clint said...

Very educational blog Lee. I really thought the Queen Diana part was interesting. I would have never known! After reading those lists, I think they really got more right then not. Only the flying cars, clothes and hoverboards really stood out

Sarah said...

I find the second Back to the Future movie to be very entertaining, but it was very far from reaching the perfection of the first movie. You point out some very good things about problems that were unintentionally created for the sequel at the end of the first movie. I'm sure they got a lot of pressure from the studio to do a sequel after the first movie performed so well at the box office. Ahhhh, the blessing and curse of the box office.

Oh, but one of the things I found interesting was that on the DVD special features, they mentioned that they didn't want the future to be a dark/apocalyptic future like the future that is portrayed in the majority of films that are set in the future (whether distant or near future). I appreciated that because life is good and people are mostly good, so why shouldn't the future be good too?