Watching the Classics with Grant – Back to the Future

Watching the Classics with Grant – Back to the Future

Blog PhotoThe Film: Back to the Future

Synopsis: Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) is a high school student who wants what every teenage boy wants – a pretty girlfriend, a new car and a family he’s not too embarrassed by.  However, these concerns take a backseat when, while helping his eccentric friend Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) with an experiment in time travel, he finds himself 30 years in the past. This event that has potentially catastrophic ramifications for him and his family as he meets his mother (Lea Thompson) and father (Crispin Glover) while they are both teenagers, interfering with their relationship in such a way that they might not marry, thus ensuring that Marty and his siblings will never be born.  As the Doc Brown of 1955 tries to send his young friend back to the future, Marty must contend with unwanted attention from his teenage mother, which makes him more than a bit uncomfortable.

My stepson Nathan announced not too long ago that the Nike Corporation had finally cracked the code and had invented Back to the Future shoes, the sort of self-tying sneakers featured in part two of the movie franchise.  He, of course, said he wanted a pair.  I, of course, said he should start saving his money.  (Set for release to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the release of the first film in the series, info on the shoes can be found here - http://www.geek.com/news/nikes-back-to-the-future-self-lacing-shoes-to-hit-market-in-2015-1585116/) Mention of this innovation in overpriced footwear got us to talking about which film in the trilogy was the best and what scenes were our favorites, all of which prompted looks of confusion on my ten year-old son Grant’s face.  In our attempt to explain just what the movies were about, his bewilderment increased to the point that the only solution was to fire up the DVD player and throw the original in.

Blog PhotoThe credits scene had him hooked from the start as the many, many clocks in Doc Brown’s lab, the intricate Rube Goldberg breakfast-making machinery and the massive speaker that Marty plugs into elicited a “That’s cool!” and a “Oh no…” respectively.  Giggles accompanied the appearance of nerdy dad George McFly, while concern over the fate of Brown’s dog Einstein was paramount in Grant’s mind at the beginning of the time-travel sequence in which the canine was used as a guinea pig. Of course a, “That’s so cool!” was uttered as the stainless steel DeLorean made its grand entrance followed by my trying to explain just why the car was so special and why they aren’t made any more.

Grant hunkered down, got sucked into the story as I remember I did when I first saw it and only had a question or two pertaining to the time travel aspects of the plot.  And then it happened, the scene I was most curious about as far as his reaction was concerned came about, the moment in which Marty and his mother Lorraine are in the front seat of a car, about to go into the Enchantment under the Sea Dance and mother-to-be plants a kiss on her son-who-is-not-yet.  In a confused voice, that had a sense of increasing understanding tinged with dread as he inquired, Grant asked, “So that would be like if I went on a date with mom, right?”  I replied that, yes this was the case, which was met with his saying “Eww,” in less a grossed-out but more horrific manner.  So there it was, a small piece of my son’s innocence deftly obliterated before my eyes, never to return.  Thanks Robert Zemeckis…

Blog PhotoHowever, this first inkling of what makes up an Oedipus Complex didn’t dissuade him from enjoying the rest of the movie.  Grant was on the edge of his seat throughout the extended climax, even uttering a sincere “Oh no,” when it appeared as though Marty wasn’t going to get to his date with destiny on time. All ended up right in the world of McFly and I knew that I’d be seeing more of these time-travel classics in the very near future when Grant asked, “Do you have part two?”  When I replied that I did and that there was a part three as well, the smile on his face told me he was hooked.

Remember the frist time you saw Back to the Future?  Leave a comment below ad let me know what your first impression of it was.

(Note: Back to the Future will be shown at the Virginia Theater, August 26-28 at 7pm.)

Next time, Grant and I go out west to meet a gunfighter named Shane.

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