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Back to the Future – Next Time You Watch it Look Out for What You Missed?

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posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 03:39 PM

Why? This is just a bit of fun to end the weekend with.

Die hard, fanatics will know all about the whole other layer to the famous trilogy.

However, those of you not so obsessed but maybe enjoyed the movies, I hope you will find this a fun but enlightening thread on all things ‘Back to the Future’. There are numerous sublte things to look out for next time you catch one or more of the movies. Originally ‘Back to the Future’ went through various script changes as ideas came and went. The titles at one stage were “Professor Brown Visits the Future” and the bizarre title “Spaceman from Pluto”.

Sid Sheinberg, a studio executive in charge of funnelling Back to the Future into the cinemas, had seen previous time-travel movies like ‘Somewhere in Time’, ‘Time Bandits’ and ‘The Final Countdown’ all fail dismally at the box office. Fearing a similar fate he suggested the bizarre title based on references to Marty McFly being mistaken for an alien by the residents of Fifties Hill Valley in one scene of the film. Today Sheinberg denies he was serious about it.

The time machine was meant to be a refrigerator and Doc Brown had a pet chimp called Shemp at one stage. The Doc eventually builds a fridge in 1885 in the last movie. Suggesting a nod to the original scripts. However because refrigerators aren’t mobile and the producers didn’t want kids climbing into them they went with a DeLorean. The iconic car also had a space age look about it. The chimp idea was dropped for a dog called Einstein.

By the time Part 3 was in planning it was hoped that former President Ronald Reagan would reprise his acting career to appear as Mayor of Hill Valley (the town name is an oxymoron surely?). That never worked out but good ole’ Ronnie did make his own reference to the original movie in in his 1986 State of the Union address:

"Never has there been a more exciting time to be alive, a time of rousing wonder and heroic achievement. As they said in the film Back to the Future, 'Where we're going, we don't need roads'."

Back to the Future’s Past

Although Michael J. Fox had been first choice for the lead role, Fox was not available due to his commitments to ‘Family Ties. So Eric Stoltz was originally chosen and played Marty McFly for six weeks. It didn’t work out as poor Eric lacked the comic timing required and was rather too intense for the role.

Above : TV Sci-fi series Fringe featured an alternative reality

Tom Wilson (Biff) gives his opinion on working with Eric Stoltz

John Lithgow, Jeff Goldblum and even Dudley Moore were also considered for the part of Doc Brown at one time before Christopher Lloyd was finally settled upon. Once Stoltz was released Michael J.Fox’s schedule had become lighter and just about allowed a window for filming.

Those Interesting Bits You Might Have Missed

• Back to the Future's opening is a panning shot of Doc Brown's workshop, showing dozens of clocks all showing the exact same time. The opening pays homage to the 1960 movie The Time Machine, which also features multiple clocks.

• Doc Brown's collection of clocks are all perfectly synchronised to be exactly 25 minutes slow. One shows a man hanging from the second hand of the clock. It feature the silent comedy star Harold Lloyd in a depiction from his 1923 movie - Safety Last. As well as a nod to a past movie, it also hints at a later scene in which the Doc hangs from the Hill Valley Clock face in similar fashion. The damage Doc causes also appears in later scenes to show the impact on the timeline.

• The Amp that Marty fires up on entering Doc’s house in the first few minutes bears a sticker marked up ‘CRM 114’ this is used in a number of Stanley Kubrick movies such as Dr. Strangelove (the Discriminator device) and 2001 A Space Odyssey (the EVA pod) .

• The film ‘Time After Time’ pre-dates ‘Back to the Future’ by 6 years and features H.G Wells (Malcolm McDowell) chasing Jack the Ripper into the future. Although the year is different, “Time After Time" and "Back to the Future feature the same date on their time machines. Both Malcolm McDowell's H.G. Wells and Doc Brown set their date to Nov. 5th (The Day Doc Brown proclaims he invented Time Travel). There is also another link.

Mary Steenburgen who plays Clara in BTTF3 also features in the film ‘Time After Time’ and one scene in particular looks familiar.

• Huey Lewis whose hit single “The Power of Love” was the featured in the film soundtrack can be seen in a cameo when Marty and his band the “Pinheads” audition for the school dance but are told they are “too darn loud” to perform. Although Paramount studio loved the Huey Lewis anthem, "Power of Love" , they were bewildered that film's title was not featured in the lyrics. Resulting in the studio sending out memos to radio stations to ensure they mentioned the movie whenever they played “The Power of Love”.

• When Marty travels back to 1955 from the ‘Twin Pines Mall’ to escape the Libyan terrorists he crashes into a pine tree on ‘Twin Pines’ ranch.

However on his return to 1985 the name of the mall has become ‘Lone Pine Mall’.

• As Marty hits 88 mph and time travels to 1955 Hill Valley he runs into a scarecrow. Possibly a reference to another classic movie the Wizard of Oz where Dorothy’s first encounter is with a scarecrow.

• Marty enters the home of George McFly in full nuclear protection gear and he plays a cassette to disorientate him. The cassette label shows ‘Edward’ Van Halen on the label. Apparently the band would not agree to use of their name. Eddie had no such problem and even went un-credited for creating the guitar noises used in the scene. However Edward was squeezed on to the cassette label in the movie itself.

• Doc (Christopher Lloyd) and Lorraine (Lea Thompson), despite being 2 of the main characters in all 3 films, are on camera together in just one scene of the whole trilogy.

>>>continued below>>>

edit on 20/8/17 by mirageman because: edit

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 03:39 PM
The Questionable Ethics of Doc Emmett Brown

It’s easy to overlook them in a family movie. But the Doc has some flawed character traits that should be pointed out.

When he attempts to harness the power of nature and use the lightning strike on the Clock Tower he is approached by a police officer. The full scene was edited in the first movie. But the surviving footage clearly shows Doc bribing a police officer. The scene ends with the officer alluding to the fact that the Doc set something on fire in the past.

He is of course talking about the ‘Brown’ Mansion. In 1985 the Doc inhabits, the only thing left at the time, the garage. Doc’s land having long been sold off to a Burger chain.

However we know from the, not so, subtle hints in the news clippings Doc keeps pinned to his wall that the home was destroyed. The clip from 1962 mentions “Brown Estate Sold To Developers: Bankrupt Inventor Sells Off 135 Prime Acres”. Whether he actually set the building on fire for the insurance money is only hinted at in the scene above. But Doc Brown certainly made money from selling the land off to a burger restaurant chain. He spent a lot of the cash collecting clocks it seems.

The Doc also has a very large collection of bank notes from various time periods.

The collection is shown in BTTF2. But how he obtained such a collection is not mentioned. As Doc is talking about destroying the time machine in 2015, he says "My only regret is that I will never get a chance to visit my favourite historical era; the Old West". You can only speculate as to how he accumulated all those notes with that in mind. Essential as those notes may be for the intrepid time traveller.

Worse still is Doc’s successful attempt to obtain plutonium from a bunch of Libyan terrorists. He tells them he will build them a nuclear bomb from the stolen plutonium! Thankfully he was only using it to fuel his time machine. But it would surely put him on the FBI watch list?

Then we have his willingness to use the 2015 version (at least in the BTTF universe) of Rohypnol on Marty’s girlfriend Jennifer. It seems the Doc has an ‘E Z Sleep’ device. Something which obviously sends people to sleep in seconds. So he uses it on poor Jennifer then leaves her unconscious, hidden in a back alley!

In the third and final instalment Doc Brown even ruins a whole railroad and steam train in efforts to get Marty back to 1985. Don’t forget that the Doc’s best and only friend is a teenage schoolboy as well!

Perhaps his character traits are influenced by the fact that he was committed back in the 1960s? BTTF2’s alternate time line shows a 1983 newspaper clip with the headline “Emmett Brown Committed Crackpot Inventor Declared Legally Insane”. It also reports Richard Nixon is seeking a 5th term and vowing to end the Vietnam war by 1985. Jeez!!!

There are plenty more little nuances and interesting trivia to be found in the trilogy. But I’m going to leave that for others to mention or people to find for themselves.

edit on 20/8/17 by mirageman because: edit

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 05:14 PM
These are also interesting:

In case you wonder who made the movie:

edit on 20-8-2017 by WombRaider69 because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 05:50 PM
Or this

edit on 20/8/17 by mirageman because: .

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 06:04 PM
Back to the Future was a Hollywood carnival ride.

Jumper was better, more believable. Ditto Twelve Monkeys.

Once you accept the premise of time travel , better to carry it to the greedy end.

Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 06:08 PM
a reply to: mirageman

Going to be honest, I never knew any of the things you pointed out about the BTTF movies. Never paid that close of attention.

That being said, I wish your tread would have went on for a couple of pages, good stuff. Thank you.

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 06:26 PM
a reply to: seasonal

Oh there is a lot more that could be added.

Some people don't even know that ZZ Top were big hits back in 1885.

If I have time tomorrow I'll add a few other things!
edit on 20/8/17 by mirageman because: ETA

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 07:14 PM
How about the sports almanac that biff gives his younger self is "Greys" almanac.

Could be a nod to grey alien technology that got a criminal syndicate where they are today.

Lots of 9/11 and eye symbolism. That picture even has "The third" right before it.

I don't believe in such coincidences...wonder who wrote these in? A member of various secret societies I wonder?

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 09:50 PM
And guess what? Part 4 is coming out! MJF will be in it as well! Amazing thread OP! I must have watched all 3 movies easily 50 times each. I still have a lot to read but awesome stuff so far!

edit on 20-8-2017 by iTruthSeeker because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 20 2017 @ 10:36 PM

originally posted by: seasonal
a reply to: mirageman

Going to be honest, I never knew any of the things you pointed out about the BTTF movies. Never paid that close of attention.

That being said, I wish your tread would have went on for a couple of pages, good stuff. Thank you.

Agreed.. This is one of the most amazing threads I have seen on ATS.

posted on Aug, 21 2017 @ 12:12 AM
Also who can forget the creey kid.

posted on Aug, 21 2017 @ 06:32 AM
Here's another 'hidden in plain sight' piece of Trivia.

In 1985 the local Hill valley cinema is showing "Orgy American Style". A real life 'dodgy' 1973 movie starring "George Buck Flower.

George Buck Flower appears briefly in BTTF (and again in part 2) as the town bum 'Red'. Some have speculated that he’s meant to be Red Thomas, the mayor of Hill Valley in 1955. There is no official confirmation from the scriptwriters as Michael J.Fox ad-libbed the line when he calls him 'Red'.

posted on Aug, 21 2017 @ 07:38 AM
And a conundrum that's long been pondered.

Exactly how many De Loreans exist towards the end of the BTTF 2.

* There is the original 1985 De Lorean after Marty's first trip.
* Then the De Lorean from 2015 stolen by Old Biff.
* Also one from Alt-1985 when Doc and Marty go back to fix the timeline
* Finally the one buried in the cave in 1885 and left there by Doc.

Does the one from Alt-1985 actually return to regular 1955 and count as a 4th De Lorean? How can all 4 (or even 3) exist in the same time?

Come to think of it why do Marty's parents never consider that their kid 'Marty' grows up to look exactly like a certain 'Calvin Klein'? A guy who spent the best part of week as very much part of their lives back in '55. He then disappeared after giving a strange performance at their high school 'Enchantment Under the Sea' dance. Only for their son to grow into his exact double a generation or so later.

Oh the mysteries of time travel.

posted on Aug, 21 2017 @ 07:45 AM
a reply to: WombRaider69

How have you not received more stars for this.



posted on Aug, 21 2017 @ 08:24 AM

originally posted by: MorpheusUSA
a reply to: WombRaider69

How have you not received more stars for this.



I have in an alternative 2017

It's that damned Manuela effect changing things again.....

posted on Aug, 21 2017 @ 04:17 PM
Another one that got slipped through the censors for a family movie

In BTTF2 the multi-channel TV screens show an ad for a Super Inflatable product.

Blink and you'll miss it.
edit on 21/8/17 by mirageman because: typo

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