Greetings again from the darkness. Thirty years is an eternity in the film making world. Only a few dozen movies even get a cable run in year two. So, it’s worth noting, and maybe even magical, when a movie is beloved and worshiped by a rabid fan base some three decades after release. Such is the case with Back to the Future, the story of Marty McFly and Dr. Emmett Brown and their time-travelling escapades. First time director Jason Aron offers up a look at the BTTF community of fans, and some behind-the-scenes scoop from those involved.
Talking heads abound in the first part of the movie, as we see and hear from the masterminds of the classic: Robert Zemekis and Bob Gale, as well as Michael J Fox, Lea Thompson, Steven Spielberg, Huey Lewis, Christopher Lloyd, Claudia Wells, Alan Silvestri, Dean Cundey, Dan Harmon, Frank Price and others. Very little new information is served up, and in fact Mr. Zemekis doesn’t seem especially excited to be involved, whereas Mr. Gale seems quite pleased and comfortable with his role in film history. The best “making of” anecdotes come from Michael J Fox, though it is interesting to note just how difficult it was for the film to get studio backing – “time travel” movies didn’t have a successful box office track record.
The middle third of the movie is dedicated to the iconic Delorean car, and all that entails. This sequence would have been effective were it completed in 10 minutes, but instead it brings the film’s flow to a dead stop. Sure, it’s amazing that this many have a hobby related to this obscure car and its role in a classic film, but enough already!
Fan-based clubs and the accuracy of the film’s “future” predictions for 2015 make up the final third of the run time, as we get a glimpse of how close we are to real hover boards and flying cars. The question that seems unanswered is just who is this film aimed at? Most of the insight has been long ago discussed in DVD “bonus” coverage or previous interviews with the key players. The fan communities are certainly of interest if one is part of it, but the vast majority of those who have held the film close to their heart for 30 years care little for the obsessive fringes, and only for the emotions and imagination delivered by the film that needs no roads.