Back to the Future

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17 year old Marty McFly got home early last night. 30 years early.

Back to the Future is a 1985 film about time travel. After traveling back to 1955, Marty McFly accidentally interferes with his parents' courtship and must make them fall in love... or else he will never be born.

Directed by Robert Zemeckis. Written by Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale.
Meet Marty McFly. He's broken the time barrier. Busted his parents' first date. And, maybe, botched his chances of ever being born.(taglines)

Doc Brown[edit]

  • If my calculations are correct, when this baby hits 88 miles per hour, you're gonna see some serious shit.
  • Next Saturday night, we're sending you back to the future!


Marty: [to Jennifer] You know, this time it wasn't my fault. The Doc set all his clocks 25 minutes slow--
Strickland: [suddenly appearing from behind] "Doc"? Am I to understand you're still hanging around with Dr. Emmett Brown, McFly? Tardy slip for you Ms. Parker. And one for you, McFly. I believe that makes four in a row. Now let me give you a nickel's worth of free advice, young man. This so called Dr. Brown is dangerous, he's a real nutcase. You hang around with him, you're gonna end up in big trouble.
Marty: [sarcastically] Oh, yes, sir.
Strickland: You got a real attitude problem, McFly. You're a slacker. You remind me of your father when he went here. He was a slacker, too.
Marty: Can I go now, Mr. Strickland?
Strickland: I noticed your band is on the roster for the dance auditions after school today. Why even bother, McFly? You don't have a chance. You're too much like your old man. No McFly ever amounted to anything in the history of Hill Valley!
Marty: Yeah, well, history is gonna change.

Lorraine: [about Jennifer] I don't like her, Marty. Any girl who just calls up a boy is just asking for trouble.
Linda: Oh, Mom, there's nothing wrong with calling a boy.
Lorraine: I think it's terrible! Girls chasing boys. When I was your age I never chased a boy or called a boy or sat in a parked car with a boy.
Linda: Then how am I supposed to ever meet anybody?
Lorraine: Well, it will just happen, like the way I met your father.
Linda: That was so stupid! Grandpa hit him with the car.
Lorraine: [wistfully] It was meant to be. Anyway, if Grandpa hadn't hit him, then none of you would have been born.
Linda: Yeah, well, I still don't understand what Dad was doing in the middle of the street.
Lorraine: What was it, George? Birdwatching?
George: What, Lorraine? What?
Lorraine: Anyway, your Grandpa hit him with the car, and brought him into the house. He seemed so helpless, like a little lost puppy. And my heart just went out to him.
Linda: Yeah, Mom, we know. You've told us this story a million times. You felt sorry for him, so you decided to go with him to the Fish Under the Sea dance.
Lorraine: No, no, it was the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. Our first date. I'll never forget it. It was the night of that terrible thunderstorm, remember, George? [George wasn't listening to what Lorraine was saying] Your father kissed me for the very first time on that dance floor. And...and it was then that I realized...that I was going to spend the rest of my life with him.

[After Doc has successfully sent Einstein to the future on his DeLorean time machine]
Doc: Ha! What did I tell you?! 88 MILES PER HOUR! The temporal displacement occurred exactly 1:20 A.M. and zero seconds!
Marty: Ah, Jesus Christ! Jesus Christ, Doc, you disintegrated Einstein!
Doc: Calm down, Marty! [takes down notes] I didn't disintegrate anything! The molecular structure of both Einstein and the car are completely intact.
Marty: Then, where the hell are they?!
Doc: The appropriate question is, When the hell are they?"! You see, Einstein has just become the world's first time traveler! I sent him into the future. One minute into the future to be exact. And at precisely 1:21 A.M. and zero seconds, we shall catch up with him and the time machine!
Marty: Wait a minute. Wait a minute Doc, uh, are you tellin’ me you built a time machine...out of a DeLorean?!
Doc: The way I see it, if you're gonna build a time machine into a car, why not do it with some style? Besides, the stainless steel construction made the flux dispersal-- [his watch beeps] Look out!

Doc: Tell me, Future Boy, who's President of the United States in 1985?
Marty: Ronald Reagan.
Doc: Ronald Reagan? The actor? [rolls his eyes] Ha! Then who's vice-president, Jerry Lewis? I suppose Jane Wyman is the First Lady?
Marty: Whoa, wait. Doc!
Doc: And Jack Benny is Secretary of the Treasury!
Marty: Doc, you gotta listen to me!
Doc: I've had enough practical jokes for one evening! Good night, future boy! [slams door]
Marty: No, wait, Doc! The-The-The-The bruise! The bruise on your head! I know how that happened! You told me the whole story! You were standing on your toilet, and you were hanging a clock, and you fell, and you hit your head on the sink, and that's when you came up with the idea for the flux capacitor, which is what, makes time travel possible.

Doc: This is more serious than I thought. Apparently your mother is amorously infatuated with you instead of your father.
Marty: Whoa, wait a minute, Doc. Are you trying to tell me that my mother has got the hots for me?
Doc: Precisely!
Marty: Whoa, this is heavy.
Doc: There's that word again: "heavy." Why are things so heavy in the future? Is there a problem with the Earth's gravitational pull?

[George visits Lorraine at the diner]
George: Lorraine. My density has bought me to you.
Lorraine: [confused] What?
George: [consults his notebook] Oh. What I meant to say was...
Lorraine: Wait a minute. Don't I know you from somewhere?
George: Yes. Yes. I'm George. George McFly. I'm your density. I mean, your destiny.
Lorraine: Oh.

Lorraine: Marty, why are you so nervous?
Marty: Lorraine, have you ever, uh, been in a situation where you knew you had to act a certain way, but when you got there, you didn't know if you could go through with it?
Lorraine: You mean, like how you're supposed to act on a first date?
Marty: Well, sort of.
Lorraine: Oh, I, I think I know exactly what you mean.
Marty: Y-Y-You do?
Lorraine: You know what I do in those situations?
Marty: What?
Lorraine: I don't worry. [kisses him hard, then stops and pulls back to see Marty is shocked] This is all wrong. I don't know what it is, but when I kiss you, it's like I'm brother. I guess that doesn't make any sense, does it?
Marty: Believe me, it makes perfect sense.

Marty: You're alive! Bulletproof vest? How did you know? I di-I never got a chance to tell you. [Doc reveals the letter Marty wrote in 1955] What about all that talk about screwing up future events? The spacetime continuum?
Doc: Well, I figured, what the hell?

[Last lines]
Marty: Hey, Doc, we better back up. We don't have enough road to get up to 88.
Doc: Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads.


  • Meet Marty McFly. He's broken the time barrier. Busted his parents' first date. And, maybe, botched his chances of ever being born.
  • 17 year old Marty McFly got home early last night. 30 years early.
  • Marty McFly just broke the time barrier. He's only got one week to get it fixed.
  • Marty McFly's having the time of his life. The only question is—what time is it?
  • He was never in time for his classes... He wasn't in time for his dinner... Then one day... he wasn't in his time at all.
  • Bumping into your parents is no big deal unless you bump into them before you were born.
  • He's the only kid ever to get into trouble before he was born.
  • Hello? Anybody home? Think McFly, Think!
  • Marty McFly has just come between the most unlikely couple in high school... His parents.
  • Marty McFly's future is catching up with him.
  • Marty McFly took a spin in a new sports car last night. But he never got past '55. 1955.
  • The story of a young man with a great future behind him.
  • Marty's parents were destined to meet in 1955. Until Marty dropped in from the future.


About Back to the Future[edit]

  • I cannot imagine what kind of callous moron could possibly see anything in being a victim of bullying. Maybe the idea comes from our cultural propaganda, where the bullied nerd, like Back to the Future's McFly, always fights back in the triumphant climax, becomes a stronger person for it, and goes on to be a successful patron of a nuclear family, while the bully winds up washing his car. Bullying, in our cultural propaganda, is simply a dramatic plot device which the hero overcomes. Rarely, if ever, is it represented as it really works- as something privately eating away at kids, flat and uninteresting, and never overcome.
    • Mark Ames, Going Postal: Rage, Murder and Rebellion: From Reagan's Workplaces to Clinton's Columbine and Beyond (2005), p. 192
  • Bob Zemeckis and I had written three movies together, and we had always wanted to do a time-travel story. We'd just never figured out how. What turned the light on for me was coming across my dad's old high-school yearbook and thinking, "Would we have been friends if we'd been at school together?" All of us have that revelation when we understand that our parents were young once, too. That's a big moment. Then there is the message that we all have control over our destinies. I thought we could dramatise those two things.
  • I think the first film resonates so well with audiences because of the element of wish-fulfilment at its heart. We've all said to ourselves, "I wish I could go back in time and change something" or, "If only I could do that over again".

External links[edit]

Back to the Future
Back to the Future · Back to the Future Part II · Back to the Future Part III