In 1985, director Robert Zemeckis (Used Cars and Romancing the Stone) released a film that was destined to become not only a summer hit, but also the beginning of a classic comedy trilogy. Back to the Future had it all; a great cast, a brilliant soundtrack, and a clever time travel story. It also didn't hurt that the film was produced by hotshot filmmaker Steven Spielberg (Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Indiana Jones, and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial) and the original story was written by Bob Gale (1941), who was first inspired by looking through his father's old high school yearbook.
Back to the Future - 1985 `80s teen Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) is accidentally sent back in time to the 1950s when his parents were his age. Desperate to return to the future, he looks up Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd), the eccentric inventor who would later create the time machine. But things become complicated when Marty fortuitously alters history, preventing his mother, Lorraine (Lea Thompson) from falling in love with his father, George (Crispin Glover). With Marty's very existence at stake, Doc prepares an elaborate setup that will send Marty back to the future but Marty must first unite his parents while avoiding high school bully, Biff (Thomas F. Wilson).
Naturally after the success of Back to the Future, both Robert Zemeckis and Universal Studios wanted to make a sequel. Universal got more than they bargained for when Zemeckis offered to direct two sequels. With Back to the Future Part II, writer Bob Gale decided to tell a more complicated story that dealt with the consequences of altering the timeline. The film was unfairly criticized for its complex story and the dark vision of an alternate 1985, but it still was rewarded with commercial success and it built up anticipation for the third film. Back to the Future Part III took the characters to the Old West and returned to the more lighthearted comedy/romance of the first film, but it ended unsatisfactorily with the destruction of the time machine.
Back to the Future Part II - 1989 Doc Brown returns from the future to warn Marty that his future children are in great danger. He, Marty, and Marty's girlfriend, Jennifer (Elisabeth Shue) travel from the year 1985 into the year 2015 in order to save Marty's children, Marlene and Marty Jr. (Michael J. Fox) from the corruptive influence of Biff's grandson, Griff (Thomas F. Wilson). Biff steals the time machine and travels into the past. When Marty and Doc return to 1985, they arrive in their hometown to find that it's become a haven for crime and disorder. Biff rules the town, and worse, he's married to Marty's mother. Now, Doc and Marty must travel back to 1955 to correct the timeline and restore the future to its normal state.
Back to the Future Part III - 1990 After the time machine is struck by lightning and Doc is sent back in time to the year of 1885, Marty seeks the aid of Doc in the year 1955 so that he can repair the time machine. But Marty discovers that the Doc in 1885 was murdered by Biff's pugilistic ancestor, Mad Dog Tannen (Thomas F. Wilson). Marty travels back to 1885 to rescue Doc, who's living out his dream of life in the Old West. Doc's fallen in love with a schoolteacher, Clara Clayton (Mary Steenburgen), and Marty must now convince him to return to the future.
The Back to the Future Trilogy has become one of the most successful trilogies ever made, as well as being one of the greatest examples of time travel in films. Blessed with a brilliant ensemble cast headed by Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd, a stirring score by Alan Silvestri, and amazing special effects, the Back to the Future films are now regarded as classics.
The 3-disc DVD set, available in both Widescreen and Full Screen versions*, includes the following bonus features:
Disc 1: Back to the Future "The Making of Back to the Future" vintage featurette, "Making the Trilogy: Chapter One" featurette, Q&A with Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, an enhanced conversation with Michael J. Fox, audio commentary with producers Bob Gale and Neil Canton, deleted scenes, outtakes, "Did You Know That?" animated anecdotes, original makeup tests, production archives, excerpts from an early draft of the screenplay, teaser trailer, cast & filmmakers' bios, production notes, and more.
Disc 2: Back to the Future Part II "The Making of Back to the Future Part II" vintage featurette, "Making the Trilogy: Chapter Two" featurette, Q&A with Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, audio commentary with producers Bob Gale and Neil Canton, deleted scenes, outtakes, "Did You Know That?" animated anecdotes, "Production Design" featurette, "Storyboarding" featurette, "Designing the DeLorean" featurette, "Designing Time Travel" featurette, Hoverboard test, "Evolution of Visual Effects Shots" featurette, production archives, Huey Lewis & the News music video, trailers, cast & filmmakers' bios, production notes, and more.
Disc 3: Back to the Future Part III "The Making of Back to the Future Part III" vintage featurette, "Making the Trilogy: Chapter Three", Q&A with Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, audio commentary with producers Bob Gale and Neil Canton, deleted scene, "Did You Know That?" animated anecdotes, "Designing the Town of Hill Valley" featurette, "Designing the Campaign" featurette, production archives, ZZ Top music video, "The Secrets of the Back to the Future" vintage documentary hosted by Kirk Cameron, FAQs About the Trilogy, trailers, cast & filmmakers' bios, production notes, and more.
* When the original DVD release of the trilogy came out in 2002, a colossal mistake was made on the Widescreen version set. Rather than preserving the original aspect ratios of the films, the DVD technicians simply placed black bars over the Full Screen version of films (the Full Screen version of the trilogy was not affected by this error). The accident caused an outpouring of complaints by so many fans that in 2005, Universal released a corrected version of the complete trilogy.
Back to the Future is a very enjoyable trilogy and this three disc set edition is well worth the price. There are also a lot of cool extra features on the disc. For example, you can watch the movie and when an icon pops on the screen, you can press play again and get commentary about the scene from Michael J. Fox, which was very interesting. The "Making of" features and interviews were also nice.
Robert Zemeckis scored a huge hit with 1985's BACK TO THE FUTURE, a film that became a genuine 1980s classic and began a successful trilogy. Taking the teen comedy a place it had never been before, on a trip to the 1950s via the 1980s, and fusing it with a time travel adventure, the film quickly became a blockbuster and established itself as a high point of 1980s pop culture. This special boxed set contains all three of Marty McFly's and Doc Brown's adventures traveling back and forth between the 1950s, the 1980s, and the 19th and 21st centuries in Doc's customized DeLorean. See individual titles for details.