Where to begin? It’s been about a week now since I sat down and watched Back To The Future. Is it good? Yes. Is it the 82nd greatest movie of all time (as Imdb would have us think)? Probably not.
What makes Back to the Future so enjoyable is the harmless dissonance that is created when Marty travels back in time. Watching him awkwardly navigate through his hometown 30 years earlier, including the incredible discomfort of being hit on by his own mother, allows a very personal and humourous connection to Marty, since, aside from him, we’re the only ones who know what he’s going through. That being said, this is the one (strong) leg that the movie stands on.
Otherwise, you’ve got cardboard characters who live to serve their purpose, and nothing else. Marty’s dad is a nerd stereotype, who needs to learn to confront the bully stereotype, in order to win over the so-easily-impressed-and-smitten-that-she’s-an-insult-to-stereotypes stereotype. The movie is absolutely dripping with nostalgia for how simple things used to be. And it’s not necessarily a bad thing, it just limits the movie to an almost cartoon status. You do get caught up in it, wanting to high-five Marty’s dad when he finally takes out the bully, but you don’t ever take it seriously.
Back To The Future is about as good as you can get without ever really having to think.