Follying around


Great Scott!

Lukasz Budnik

15 May 2023

back-to-the-future science fiction

This may be a truism, but it is worth emphasizing – the Back to the Future trilogy is an excellent adventure cinema. Brilliantly directed, cast and written. Each time evoking the same intense emotions, from laughter to stress to emotion. You get the impression that this series consists of only good scenes, preferably working as a whole. I will try to meet this feeling and choose seven of those to which I return most willingly.

7. Duel (Back to the Future III)

back-to-the-future science fiction

How satisfying it is to watch Marty’s duel with Buford Tannen. I suppose it doesn’t make much difference to McFly that his opponent is Biff’s great-grandfather and not himself. The important thing is that he finally has the opportunity to fight one-on-one with a member of the family that has already spoiled his blood so much. Without escaping, without interfering with past events – what matters is here and now. In addition, come out of this duel victorious, using cunning rather than strength (he may be grateful that he watched Sergio Leone’s A Fistful of Dollars). Buford’s surprise that winning doesn’t come so easily to him, and how he finally ends, leave the viewer in a sensational mood. Bravo, Marty!

6. Hoverboard (Back to the Future II)

back-to-the-future science fiction

A fragment that is an obvious reference to the first part (which is directly commented on in the scene itself), but winning with it by setting in a given time. This time Marty is running not from Biff and his buddies, but from the grandson of the aforementioned. It is more important not so much to whom, but how. Hoverboard is a gadget that many moviegoers probably dream of. Of course, we already have electric skateboards, but it’s still not the same level of fun when you can’t levitate above the ground (what a pity that it’s been three years since the date depicted in the video!). The scene itself is a funny, dynamic sequence, today entertaining not only with the action itself, but also with the elements of the environment. We already know what 2015 actually looked like, so comparing the film vision with reality is an additional attraction. In addition, it’s always nice to watch the protagonist win with a bunch of dumb cutthroats. Especially as likable as Marty McFly.

5. The Train (Back to the Future III)

back-to-the-future science fiction

If I had to evaluate each of the parts separately, I would probably point to the third as the weakest one (and it’s still a great movie!), but the climax in the form of another return to the future is excellent. The whole sequence evokes powerful layers of emotions and keeps you in constant suspense until the very end. At this stage of the journey, we are already so close to the heroes that we want them to achieve their goal at all costs – so we tremble with emotions every time they encounter another danger (fortunately, there is a Hoverboard brought from 2015 at our disposal!) . In addition to the emotional layer, the technical side is also fantastic here – the practical effects are flawless, with particular emphasis on the train falling off the cliff.

4. "We don't need roads" (Back to the Future)

back-to-the-future science fiction

Marty can breathe a sigh of relief – not only did he not disappear from this world, but also, in a way, led to a significant improvement in his life situation. He is left to enjoy the prospect of a weekend with his beloved Jennifer. Is it? The sudden appearance of Dr. Brown verifies his plans and certainly confuses his head a bit – after all, it’s not every day that you hear from a friend returning from the future that you need to help your children (in addition, standing next to their future mother). We agree with Marty when he notices the lack of a proper way to accelerate, but Brown’s answer and what is happening with the DeLorean dispel all doubts – let’s better prepare for a new adventure. Flawless ending!

3. The Letter (Back to the Future II)

back-to-the-future science fiction

The moment of hopelessness we feel after the disappearance of Dr. Brown at the end of part two turns into curiosity and hope when a courier appears out of nowhere with a letter for Marty. You can breathe a sigh of relief – Brown is alive and well, with the small detail that in 1885. For Marty, this fact is an announcement of another adventure, and for the viewer, a great bridge to the final part of the trilogy (just like the finale of the first part is a perfect bridge to the sequel). It’s hard not to feel sorry for Dr. Brown in 1955 when literally seconds after sending McFly home, he meets the boy again and once again finds out that he has to help him. A great ending, after which it’s hard to wait for the last part of the series.

2. The Great Storm (Back to the Future)

back-to-the-future science fiction

The titular return takes place when a huge storm hits Hill Valley and permanently damages the town hall clock. We hear about this event at the beginning of the film, but then we have no idea that it will be crucial for Marty to return home. It would be naive to think that Dr. Brown’s plan will go smoothly. It wouldn’t be like him and Marty at all. So there is a random accident – the wire that is supposed to lead the electric charge to the DeLorean is disconnected, and zero hour, of course, is not long. Failures pile up, one unlucky event chases another, and until the last second we sit on pins and needles, rooting for Brown to reconnect the wire and let Marty go back to his time. Together with him, we can breathe a deep sigh of relief when the car disappears in a flash. Mission accomplished, although – as shown by the previous scene described here – not quite yet.

1. Enchantment Under the Sea (Back to the Future)


back-to-the-future science fiction

I had no doubt that Enchantment Under the Sea should be at the top of this list. For Marty McFly, the school dance is far from having fun, but rather his literal to be or not to be. If George and Lorraine fail to kiss, both Marty and his siblings will cease to exist. Not a pleasant prospect, especially in the face of the fact that Lorraine devotes more attention to her own (future) son, and George’s pick-up is ineffective, to say the least. Even when everything seems to be going well – the older of the McFlys gathers courage and knocks out Biff, and Lorraine sees him as an object of interest, there is still a bit to be had for happiness, after all, a kiss is the key here.

The best fun starts from the moment Marty joins the band – although somewhere in the back of our minds we know that he just has to succeed, Zemeckis builds the tension very well here. With each passing minute, Marty’s fear that he is about to disappear grows, and so does the fear of the viewer. We get even more euphoric when Lorraine and George finally start kissing and Earth Angel reaches its climax. A fantastically made moment! The icing on the cake is, of course, Johnny B. Goode performed by Marty, an excellent seal of the good mood caused by the fulfillment of his mission.

A slightly different kind of emotion arouses the return to this sequence in the second part of the trilogy, as it is the background to Marty’s next adventure and the burden is shifted to his current actions. This does not change the fact that returning to this dance party once again – as always – arouses the greatest possible film joy.

Would you put these scenes in your individual rankings as well? I’d love to hear your suggestions!

Ɓukasz Budnik

Lukasz Budnik

He loves both silent cinema and contemporary blockbusters based on comic books. He looks forward to watching movie with his growing son.

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