I immediately loved Back to the Future when it came out. To this day I can watch it over and over again. Of course back then I did have a major crush on Michael J. Fox so that helped. I couldn’t help but talk about the movie all the time, my parents even bought me this limited edition silkscreen poster from our local video guy, which I still have to this day. I also still have my back to the future 2 lunchbox.
As I got older I realized that the movie was actually filmed in my hometown of Whittier, CA. Whittier High School is where they filmed all the exterior HS scenes. I personally dont like my hometown so I was finally happy that something cool happened there aside from Richard Nixon going to College there or that the live action He-man movie and Hocus Pocus were filmed there.
I can’t hear Huey Lewis & the News “Power of Love” song with out immediately thinking of BTTF or seeing a Volkswagen van and wondering if that is the car of choice for Libyan terrorists. I can’t look at a capital Y and not think flux capacitor or constantly confuse desenity for destiny in casual conversation. The coolest thing was when I worked for a TV show on the Universal Lot I got to actually walk past the clock tower on a regular basis.
Throughout my years of growing up I have taken a lot from the movie and realized it has a lot of life lessons. I would often find myself quoting lines or incidents in the movie to explain things to my friends or rationalize something. So I think I will finally try to write the book I would title: Great Scott! a.k.a. What Back to the Future taught me about life. So here are several things Back to the future (the trilogy) has taught me about life:
- “If you put your mind to it you can accomplish anything” Obviously the ongoing theme for the movie since this is repeated often. It is a nice mantra to live by. Dedicate yourself and anything can happen. Look at Doc Brown people called him crazy, they thought he was lame but he never gave up. Hello! the dude invented a time machine, mind you in BTTF2 a time machine that can fly and run on recycled fuel! (The man is a genius).
- “Have some respect for yourself. Don’t you know if you let people walk over you now, they’ll be walking over you for the rest of your life!” As said by mayor Goldie Wilson when he was only a bus boy in a 1950s diner. He has it right, dont let stupid people get the best of you. Look at Biff Tannen the guy is dumb yet George McFly lets him walk all over him which as a result pretty much ruined his whole life. I mean if someone comes up to you and says get like a tree and get out of here could you ever take them seriously again? Clearly the lights are on and no ones home. Lucky for George his son could go back in time and fix his life but really we dont have that luxury well not yet…..fingers crossed.
- Don't let what others say about you dictate how you make your decisions. A common theme for the McFly men. As we all know Marty gets really irked and reckless when someone calls him “chicken” causing him to lash out and do stupid things. For one we learn in BTTF2 he got in a horrible car accident that ruins his music career and he also gets fired from his crappy job. Which makes me think how many times in life do we do something horrible just to prove it and it blows up in our face? But in Marty’s case I always wanted to know why chicken was such a hot button word for him.
- Your Parents are people too. This really applies in that teen angsty phase of life. Growing up we often forget that. We think our parents are robots always telling us what we can’t do. But for all we known our mother could have been a horny, boozing, smoking teen like Lorraine. Maybe our dad could have been a nerdy peeping tom; okay maybe we figured this one out already with out the help of a time machine. So it is best to remember if you screw up more than likely you parents did things 10 times worse.
- We can learn a lot from the older generation a.k.a. old people are cool. Look at Doc Brown the idea of a 17 year old Marty hanging out with a 60ish year old man at first sight seems creepy on almost every level. But with all the knowledge Doc has and all the cool experiences he gives to Marty. Marty actually has it pretty good. I wish I could meet an old rich guy like that with out the creep factor…
- “One Rejection isnt the end of the world” as said by Marty’s girlfriend Jennifer (the non Elisabeth Shue one) to Marty when the dance committee rejects him because he was “too loud.” I don’t blame Marty for being upset I mean he got rejected by Huey Lewis, now that is embarrassing. Just because someone doesn’t understand your ideas or creativeness there is no reason to give up. Keep trying and if they look at you with bewilderment just say, “I guess you guys arent ready for that yet.” It worked for Marty.Maybe it’ll work for you…