A Classic ‘Back to the Future’ Scene 25 Years Later

Posted on 24 October 2010 by Derek

As Back to the Future celebrates it’s 25th birthday you know a Hollywood executive is imagining
a way to remake it, imagine with me

When I was in Junior High School I remember hearing that The Wizard of Oz was one of the great films that could never be remade (apparently the film critic I heard conveniently forgot 1978’s The Wiz).

I remember thinking that’s really ashame because a modern Wizard of Oz would be so much cooler than a guy in a silly lion suit.

Apparently, as mentioned before, the idle daydreams of a preteen were shared by the decision makers in Hollywood and we now have a remake, a sequel, a prequel, and several other Wizard of Oz themed movies in the works.

If they’re remaking Oz, is there anything that’s truly remake proof? As Back to the Future gets re-released on Blu-Ray, DVD, and even for one day in some movie theaters to celebrate it’s 25th anniversary, and as the series captures headlines with cast reunions and video game developments is there not an executive sitting in an office somewhere thinking you know, we could reshoot that time travel movie in 3D!

And what if they did…

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Would the iconic Deloraine be replaced with its modern day gull-winged relative, the 2011 Mercedes SLS AMG? I mean, like Doc said, if you’re going to build a time machine out of a car why not do it with style?

Would the Libyan terrorists of the 1985 film be re-written as an Al-Qaeda sleeper cell? Perhaps in a world that’s seen so much terrorism in the last decade, nervous studio executives would insist on axing the terrorist subplot all together. This would not only leave a gaping hole in Emmett Brown’s storyline, it’d also give a poor assignment writer some tough hoops to jump threw in explaining, in a positive light, where the good doctor’s stolen uranium came from.

Of course the biggest change would be a matter of time. The original film saw Marty travel from 1985 to 1955, a 30 year journey to a time when his parents were around the same age as him. If one were to remake the movie, present day Marty would have to have parent’s well into their 70s or the timeline would be seeing Marty travel way back in the past to… 1980.

That’s heavy, Doc.

jigowattwhat.jpg

Losing the setting of the 1950s changes the characters that inhabit the past, it changes their outlooks, their actions, and ultimately changes a good two thirds of your script… perhaps Back to the Future really is one that can never be remade?

In honour of the truly timeless Back to the Future’s 25th anniversary let’s imagine a classic scene built largely around a joke that was of it’s time…

DOC BROWN

Time machine, I haven’t invented any time machine.

MARTY

Okay, alright, I’ll prove it to you.

Pulling out his wallet...

MARTY

Look at my driver’s license, expires 1987. Look at my birthday, for crying out loud, I haven’t even been born yet. And look at this picture, my brother, my sister, and me. Look at the sweatshirt, Doc, class of 1984!

MARTY

Pretty mediocre photographic fakery, they cut off your brother’s hair.

MARTY

I’m telling the truth Doc. You gotta believe me.

DOC BROWN

So tell me Future Boy, who’s President of the United States in 1985?

MARTY

Ronald Reagan.

DOC BROWN

Ronald Reagan the actor?! Then who’s Vice President, Jerry Lewis?

And now updated for a remake…

DOC BROWN

Time machine, I haven’t invented a time machine.

MARTY

Okay, alright, I’ll prove it.

Marty pulls out an iPhone from his pants pocket.

Clicking on the Photos icon he scrolls through the thumbnails until he stops on one.

MARTY

Look at this picture, my brother, my sister, and me. Look at the sweatshirt, Doc, class of 2009!

DOC BROWN

Pretty mediocre photographic fakery, they cut off your brother’s hair.

MARTY

I’m telling the truth Doc. You gotta believe me.

DOC BROWN

Then tell me “future boy” who’s President in 2010?

MARTY

Barack Obama.

DOC BROWN

O’Bama? An Irish Catholic in the White House? Ha, like America could ever be that progressive.

MARTY

Well actually Doc... nevermind.

DOC BROWN

Let me guess, a woman is Vice President?

MARTY

Would you accept Secretary of State?

DOC BROWN

I’ve had enough practical jokes for one evening. Good night Future Boy!

MARTY

Wait, Doc, wait. Look at this...

Clicking through the iPhone again Marty opens up the video he recorded earlier.

Hitting play...

VIDEO DOC

Good evening I’m Dr. Emmett Brown, I’m standing here in the parking lot of Twin Pines Mall, it’s Tuesday morning, October 26th 2010.

DOC BROWN

Why that’s me! Look at me, I’m an old man!

MARTY

This is it, this is the part coming up, Doc.

DOC BROWN

This is truly amazing. A portable television studio.

MARTY

It’s called a Smart Phone, there’s apps for photos, videos...

DOC BROWN

Apps?

MARTY

Listen, listen...

VIDEO DOC

No, no, this sucker’s electrical, but I need a nuclear reaction to generate the 1.21 jigowatts of electricity I need.

DOC BROWN

What did I just say?

Marty jumps the video back a few seconds.

VIDEO DOC

...generate the 1.21 jigowatts of electricity I need.

DOC BROWN

1.21 jigowatts?! 1.21 jigowatts. Great Scott!!!

MARTY

What the hell is a jigowatt?

DOC BROWN

1.21 jigowatts, how am I gonna generate that kind of power? It can’t be done, oh I’m sure in 2010 there’s an app for that, but in 1955... Marty, I’m afraid you’re stuck here.

  • Sarah Vardy

    Derek, this is wonderful and hilarious. Touche.

  • Derek this sounds like an excellent idea. Prepare yourself to be saying "that was my idea!" as we usually do 3 or 4 years after we have a great idea!

  • Sdorai1

    as much as I'm against a remake of this...that updated scene was actually pretty good!

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