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Why has BTTF withstood the test of time?

posted by Droog on - last edited - Viewed by 345 users

I was 15 in 1985, I am 40 now. I loved the movie then, I love it now, and I can't pass it up when it is on TV... Considering most movies don't age well, such as ET for example, ET was the most popular film in 82, it was in theaters for over a year, but I think most of us find it cheesy or can care less... What is it about these 3 films that still makes it popular? We all like MJF, and I can't see it still popular if it was Eric Stolz.
I am looking forward to the game, slightly disappointed that MJF isn't going to voice it, but I can understand why. I will be OK with the new guy, he pulls it off well, I am thrilled CL is back as Doc Brown, I grew up watching him as Jim on Taxi. I can't wait for the game, I use to be a film major, so I am just curious, why is it still popular? Story? Characters? Effects? Humor? So many people make, or want to make films, why did this click with all of us?

10 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • Because people like a protagonist they can relate to.
    Marty is a teenager like we all were and has family problems people can relate to.
    He then gets thrown in an absurd situation that involves traveling back in time to meet his parents when he was the same age.

    Another reason is probably that the plot outline of the movie is so intruiging. I think a lot of people dream of being able to step back in time once. This movie presents us with one of the most compelling 'what-if' situations.

    A third reason is that the movie really has no weak aspects to it. Not a single fault.
    Characters, acting, soundtrack, story, pacing, cinematography, sets OWH and especially script, every line is memorable. Everything is just top notch within this movie.

    Another noteworthy aspect of BttF, which probably accounts more for why it was so popular rather than timeless, is that it appeals to all ages and gender. Kids, teenagers, adults, parents, romantic-fanatics, sci-fi and/or comedy fans.

    I am 21 and have been reading books, playing videogames, watching movies since I was 4.
    I have been exposed to countless of stories so I can really recognize a 'special' production when I see one. I love every genre except for pure romance. I pay special attention to pacing, build-up and the value every scene adds.
    With Bttf no scene is boring or redundant. When you watch it you never have the need for fast-forwarding.
    It really is a great feat among cinema.

  • Why...It's because of the flux capacitor of course!

  • I think one of the reasons BTTF is lasted the test of time is because of it authenticity with its 50's & 80's time periods. All the logos, movies, cars, items and whatnot are perfect to help the audience feel like they have trully gone to that time period. I know its like the 1st movie was a trip for both generations of viewers. The 'baby boomers' have fond memories of growing up in the 50's and remember the good times. While the 80's generation would be confused and scared at how much things have changed 30 years ago. (such as how Marty was reacting to what was going on in the movie and no one understands what he is talking about.)

    Also, again, everyone hears stories about how their parents never did this, or was so popular in school, or whatnot when they were kids...but if you could really go back in time, did they REALLY do that, or where they just pulling your chain.

    And its just the characters that represent everyday people. Marty is just your average teenager, Doc is a crazy guy who makes these things in his garage that may or may not work, George is just the geeky shy nerd, Lorane is an innocent teen girl who is looking for love, and Biff your biggest school bully who makes everybody miserable. Everybody knows someone who is kinda like that.

  • I haven't read through this whole thread, so excuse me if I'm repeating someone. However, I think the biggest thing the movie has going for it is that it never really dates itself. The movies spend so little time in the 80's and it's never "over-the-top" 80's filled with all sorts of cliches. I mean, compare BttF to the Bill and Ted series. Bill and Ted was FILLED with 80's catch phrases and huge bright 80's colors. BttF never went that way with it. The time frame was much more realistic and subdued.

  • I'll say we can all relate to marty too, and wish we could go back in time and relive a part of our past.

    I was 5 or 6 when I first saw BTTF come on TV in 88 or 89, every since then I was hooked! The Delorean is such a unique car, and is perfect for a flying time machine. Sure the real life DMC-12 sucks on performance, but what other early 80's American car wasn't robbed of its performace back then due to emmision standards? It took the US almost 30 years to get a good balance of performance to emmissions anyway lol.

    I love the characters and plot so much, and this trilogy is my Star Wars. No other story has had such an impact on how I think. I wish more movies could be as good as this a quarter of a century later and stand the test of time.

  • The reason why Back to the Future stood the test of time so well... is because it's not a movie about Time Travel. Time travel is an important story element in it, sure, but, in the end, it wouldn't have mattered that much if the movie was made in the 50's and Marty went back to 20s, or it was made now in year 2010 and Marty would go back to 1980, because Back to the Future is, ultimately, a character-driven story, one which EVERYONE can relate to. Times change, but people don't. That's why BttF is a timeless movie.

  • The smartly written plots, the humour, the music, the delorean...They are just great movies :).

  • I think i can sum this up like this :

    1 : Movie was ahead of its time, it certainly didn't feel 80's, more like 90's

    2 : Perfect characters + interaction in the movie, you can actually feel your like a part of it, like you are in it yourself.

    3 : Perfect storyline, and this is what gives the movie a "soul" , you get sucked right in the movie when you watch it, it's alive and kicking.

    Not what you see nowadays in most games and movies with insane over-the-top action and special effects but no proper storyline in it at all. Rendered CGI stuff isn't always good, in fact it can have a overall unrealistic impact.

    4 : Good special effects for its time, and not used over-the-top but realistic and subtle usage of all effects.

    5 : Great orchestral music and other tracks, this certainly created the "mood" / "atmosphere" of the movie scenes.

    6 : Great use of scenery, decors, props etc. It all looked very real.

    But if i had to choose between these 6 i would go for the storyline, its just so well made.

  • It's hard to think of a film genre that the BTTF trilogy doesn't include. And most of them it even puts a fun and original twist on.

    For instance, taken at face value, much of the first movie is a typical romantic comedy--boy likes girl, girl likes the wrong boy, the right boy needs to prove himself. The twist is that the wrong boy is (A) the protagonist, (B) on the right boy's side, and (C) the couple's son from the future.

    Chances are if you like movies, you like one of the genres BTTF can fit itself in.

  • even though parts are dated many of the jokes are timeless like say oh "History Repeats itself". The part that is really dated is when they go to the future in BTTF 2(boy that shark looks so PS1 and/or N64 lol) but most of the rest really holds up...

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