Wednesday, 21 October 2015

The Future Has Arrived

Happy Back To The Future 2 day everyone!

Having been lost in time myself (I haven't blogged here for nearly 6 months) I can't resist adding my own little piece to the worldwide celebrations.

The first Back To the Future film is, as far as I'm concerned, the greatest narrative screenplay ever written. Beautifully structured, superbly paced, and with flawless internal logic. And most importantly, it's just damn good fun.

When I got my big break to work on the movie Who Framed Roger Rabbit I was excited to get to meet director Robert Zemeckis and watch how he works. And having heard (this is back in 1987) that he was going to direct two sequels to Back To The Future as soon as he'd wrapped Roger Rabbit, I couldn't resist being an annoying little nerd and cornering him at a Christmas party to try and prise out some information about the upcoming movies...

"Well," he said, "the first one's set thirty years in the future, and the next one's set way in the past - it's gonna be a western."

An enigmatic smile. A long silence. "And that's all I'm gonna tell you."

And despite a bit more prodding, he wouldn't budge. Like everyone else I had to join the cinema queue 18 months later and find out for myself.

But these three films remain my favourite trilogy ever. Had Bob Zemeckis been born Jean-Luc Zemeckis, and had Back To The Future 2 been subtitled, critics would have raved about how it plays with Cinematic Point Of View And Self Referential Reflexivity - or somesuch - but being a 'commercial' film this was pretty much overlooked. Whatever. They made a load of money, and spread a lot of joy, and people are still celebrating today.

So, if you're a fan, have a great day. The Future has arrived. (Sadly, minus the flying cars.)

Robert Zemeckis directing Michael J Fox on Back to the Future 2