I think I have finally figured it out! After years of tough and long mental thought I have figured out how to move forward and reboot the Back To The Future trilogy… and it came to me in a dream… No, seriously. I’ll hold off on the dream talk for now because we need to get a few things clear.
When I’m talking about Back To The Future I’m bundling all 3 films together because it’s that complete. I’m well aware that the 1st film is the best, the 2nd is arguably as good as the 1st, and the 3rd isn’t nearly as good as either but somehow gets better when you catch it on TV.
Here’s why it’s a brilliant trilogy:
Aside from the obvious things like amazing characters, fun storylines, great writing, great directing, and continuous new imaginative visuals it created a fail safe for itself. When Back To The Future literally went to the future in Part 2 it went to the year 2015, forever sealing its fate in that desired time and location. We currently cannot make a sequel to the film because our modern day (2012) doesn’t look like the conception when it was released in 1989, ie: hover boards, flying cars, and fashion. It’s brilliant, right?
Also, in Part 2 we learned that Marty had kids, was married to Jennifer, and Biffs grandson Griff went to jail (to name a few) - another fail safe. Initial thought is there is no way to make a sequel, say Back To The Future Part 4 because it would look hokey and out of touch. Of course this couldn’t have been the intent of the team behind Back To The Future when they created it but it happened, and it’s awesome.
Here’s what my thoughts have always been about trying to flip this trilogy:
- In order to keep this series going with the same title and characters someone would have to conceivably start from scratch and remake the film with a new Marty, Doc Brown, George McFly, Biff, etc… The problem with this idea is everyone knows it’s to soon to do this and that the original films are still better than almost everything in the world.
- The movie could take place in 1985 picking up from where Part 3 left off but the main issue is that a train murdered the DeLorean and Doc Brown is stuck in the old west. OH, and lets not forget the obvious… Michael J Fox and Doc Brown are older and cannot be in these films.
- Speaking of Doc Brown; maybe Part 4 could start in the Wild West and he could send some cowboys into the future for whatever reason. But, who really wants to start a film in the Wild West?
- At the end of Part 3 when Jennifer’s fax disappears stating “you’re fired” she asks Doc what the deal is and Doc says: “the future has not been written yet” – Oh shit! Does that one sentence negate everything above? Did Zemeckis know what he was doing when that line was spoken? What does that mean!?
Quick Side Note: I feel like this is a good random stopping point to point out that I don’t know why everything needs to be rebooted or remade. Honestly, I don’t know why I can’t leave this alone, well, yes I do. I loved this series and deep down I want to pay homage to it. I know that someone is going to redo this movie and trilogy and I want it to be me. Moving on…
Back to my dream and my Back To The Future solve. Remember in Part 1 when Doc Brown was shot by the Libyans at the Twin Pines mall and was talking about plutonium? Also, remember that Marty was recording him? In fact, Marty brought the videotape with him to 1955 to show doc he knew about the flux compacitor. Well, that footage is key to keeping everything moving forward.
In my dream a group of current day kids found the footage from Doc Brown and Marty (along with footage we’ve never seen in the films) and learned how to build a time machine, and not just from a DeLorean but from anything because they know what makes time travel possible… The Flux Compacitor.
The beauty of Doc filming himself in the first film opens up the idea completely and it’s totally logical he was in YouTube mode filming himself stating what he needs to do to time travel. Doc was essentially making a running diary of his work, thus throwing all of his knowledge to future time travelers.
The kids would then reference the footage, create a time machine, and proceed to go on their own adventure, and on this adventure they could maintain the integrity of the series and also reference things like Hill Dale, the clock tower, Marty and Jennifer, Biff, hover board… basically everything from the original that’s cool.
Major issue: The flying fucking cars in the future that we don’t have in current day. The solve: Doc Brown was the catalyst behind the flying and much of the technology that we saw in Part 2 but he just didn’t know it (this would also explain how he created a flying train in Part 3). But since Doc isn’t around because he went back to the Wild West the flying car hasn’t hit the scene… yet (but could be referenced in the video tapes).
Also, lets not forget Doc’s crazy ass “the future has not been written yet” line and plug that in when we need to. Is this line a cop out? Yes. But my entire plot hinges on that line and the videotape footage.
And BOOM, we have a reboot and a semi sequel to the films! But wait, just like Back To The Future there’s one more option -
My dream also consisted of a low budget version of Back To The Future – seriously. That low budget modern day version is a found footage approach, which still revolves around Doc’s videotapes but takes place in 1985. This version takes place during the time that Marty heads back to the past in Part 1 when the Libyans shot Doc.
The major flaw to this is that Marty took the video camera with him, but I’m sure there is some kind of work around to that. How cool is a found footage time travel movie?
What this all boils down to is that in order to reboot this franchise and not fuck things up we need Doc’s footage, it’s the spine to everything, its like the flux compacitor. In my dream it seemed perfect. With this footage we can move forward to open a new adventure for a new group of kids and integrate the old crew.
Does this sound crazy?
In my perfect world this franchise would go untouched, but that’s not reality. We’re in that zone where it’s easier to just retool and reboot everything under the sun due to the built in audience and financial return. Also, we’re getting to a point where the people that are taking over and can make these decisions were fan boys of the original series and if someone has the opportunity to redo this thing, it’s going to happen.
Truthfully, I want to make this movie and when I pitched the idea to someone they thought I was crazy and couldn’t be done. Screw crazy, Doc Brown was crazy and he made a time machine out of a DeLorean. If someone reads this and has the immediate power to get a reboot in motion don’t F things up.