Link to the Past: Back to the Future Part II

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With most sequels, there is trepidation that it won’t be able to match the quality of the original. We’ve seen follow ups become victim to this theory, and seen others trump it. When you have a movie like Back to the Future, creating the next chapter in the story was probably a daunting task to the crew behind the first film.

Thankfully, Back to the Future Part 2 matches the worth of the initial outing, and then at points, even surpasses it. At times, I don’t know which one I prefer more: the classic, or the layered creativity of the sequel. And it speaks loads of how this movie was made, because sets were scrapped when the first movie wrapped had to be rebuilt from scratch. Obviously the idea of a Back to the Future continuing its story into a second entry was not a thought that crossed anybody’s minds back in the day.

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But here we are, 25 years later, on the brink of the year (2015) where Back to the Future Part 2 told us we would have flying cars, hovering skateboards, 50 dollar Pepsi, and many other things that in reality that we have no technological capacity in actually achieving. Regardless, while the future aspect is cool to look at, the real meat of the story relies in Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) retrieving an almanac from Biff (Tom Wilson) that drives him into financial power. Biff gets it in the future (2015) and gives it to himself in 1955. When Marty and Doc (Christopher Lloyd) discover that this trade affects the 1985 timeline they return to 1955 to intercept the book changing the future. This one piece of text remains the centerpiece of a timeline jump film that overlaps the first movie. Sometimes two Martys are on the screen, sometimes two Docs, and obviously two Biffs (as mentioned) but the interaction (or lack thereof for “disrupting the space time continuum “ is a big no no) layers the set pieces so creatively that the movie feels like a sequel done way better than anyone could’ve imagined.

The special effects, a near three decades later, still look amazing (Despite Marty proclaiming that the Jaws 19 shark still looks fake) and the soundtrack incorporates Alan Silvestri’s classic theme to drive the story along perfectly. Each actor owns their roles well, with Tom Wilson being the focal point as Biff’s forever bullying bad guy. It’s his tale for sure, and the actor makes Biff drunk with power as only the butthead can be. Of course, Fox and Lloyd prove to keep their bromance strong, as the two are one of the best cinematic duos ever, till the end of time even.

The DeLorean featured within is probably my favorite of the three variations, with its hover conversion and Mr. Fusion Flux Capacitor/Time Circuits feeder. Seriously though, if anybody in Hollywood decides to remake BttF, not only will it be a terrible idea and execution, but no one will find a car that exists now that is as iconic as the DeLorean was in the 1980s. I wanna own that car someday. I adore that vehicle to a disturbing degree.

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And I love this movie without a shadow of a doubt. It takes concepts from the first movie and expands upon them in a way that doesn’t ruin what is set in motion by the original. It imaginative look at the year 2015 has us all drooling for hoverboards to come our way this upcoming January 1st. It could happen! Anyway, it’s more than a memorable sequel; it’s a damn good one at that. Also, it showed us what would happen in Part 3, which was filmed back to back with this. The Back to the Future sequels were the first films of its kind to take this concept of shooting two movies in a given time span, a formula which would be used heavily for Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings films.

It’s a sequel that I would practically call flawless, which is a rare thing to come by. It has a lot of similarities and scenes that remind you of the first one, but not to the point of being exhausted by repetition. And in its defense, there’s a lot of novelty in this movie compared to its predecessor, which puts both on an equal playing field. But just like movie one, I can say Back to the Future Part 2 is one of my favorite movies of all time.

Great Scott! See what I did there?

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