My Review of "Back to the Future II"
Re-watching this classic from my youth. Sometimes things don't really play out the way you remember.
Back to the Future II, was one of my favorite movies when I was a kid. It came out in 1989 and I remember how it blew my mind. The idea of different timelines and time travel was absolutely foreign to me. I would watch that movie in awe every time it would play on TV. Unfortunately in 2021 I don't quite have as much of a wide eyed wonder about the movie.
This movie starts off pretty much exactly where the first movie ended. Doc Brown has come back from the future. He has taken Marty and Jennifer to the future to save their children from doing something dumb. I didn't really understand how the movie was quite aware of itself throughout the movie. Doc Brown and Marty have a small discussion to explain how dumb the idea of going to the future is and I guess we just go with it.
Upon quickly thwarting the dastardly plans of Biff Jr., Marty buys a sports almanac to make money when they come back to the "present" time of 1985. Doc Brown quickly scraps this plan by telling Marty the possible repercussions of taking advantage of time travel. I was thinking how ironic it was for Doc Brown to be saying this but he brings Marty to the future to correct something that happens to his kids.
While Doc Brown is reprimanding Marty, future Biff overhears the whole scheme. During a MacGuffin to save Jennifer, Biff hijacks the DeLorean to give the sports almanac to his younger self. He returns the car and when the gang goes back to 1985 they realize everything's changed.
Now they have to figure out how to get that book back from younger Biff so that 1985 goes back to the 1985 they were accustomed to. That's the big adventure and it's fun because they play upon the events that had happened in the first movie seamlessly with this sequel.
Watching it today I can obviously tell some of the special effects aren't quite up to snuff by today's standards. That's to be expected though. It was a movie that came out over 30 years ago. People today should take that into account to understand how impressive the effects were back in my day.
Aside from that a lot of the movie still holds up today. There was some good writing in this movie but I saw somethings that kind of bothered me. The whole reason of going to the future in the first place was obviously silly and the movie was well aware of it.
Some of the scenarios that Doc Brown warns everybody about happen and there's really no crazy repercussions. For example people seeing their older or younger versions of themselves was supposed to be earth shattering but it never becomes this.
There's a scene that I found totally far fetched. It involves Doc Brown talking to his younger self. I don't know how the younger version wouldn't recognize that he was talking to his older self. They look identical to one another. In addition to this farcical scenario, the two Doc Browns are standing next to one another. The future Doc Brown has his head turned away but that's not really going to do anything. Besides wouldn't you find it weird if you were talking to someone and they weren't giving you eye contact?
The second big issue I had was with the walkie talkies that Doc Brown and Marty were communicating with each other with. First of all the range of those walkie talkies back was obscenely huge. They can make a case that Doc Brown could have bought them from the future. My main issue was that Marty was talking to Doc Brown from the back of Biff's car and Biff didn't notice it at all.
I don't care how loud Biff's car is or his radio, he should have noticed Marty in the back. At times he was yelling to Doc Brown and it seemed really far fetched that Biff wouldn't notice. That whole car scene was kind of ridiculous but it was still quite playful
It's still a very fun movie and I bet the actors had a great time making it because it was pretty revolutionary at the time. Not only did they have special effects that blew our minds. The whole concept of the movie was ground breaking. It was like the Star Wars: A New Hope/Matrix for the 80's.
Overall, I still had a great time watching this movie. There are still a lot of nostalgic factors that make me biased to liking this movie though. I'm sure that people today that have never seen Back to the Future would still enjoy this movie. That's why I have to give this movie an 8 out of 10. The older I get the more I'm finding weird things about old movies. Luckily I was still able to enjoy this one.