Welcome to this blog of my film reviews. Some have been drafted carefully on paper, others I have sat and typed. I'm going to make it clear right now that I don't expect you to agree with my (re)views, or to like my style of writing. However, I want my views to be just out there and open, as a person who wishes to express himself from deep within. Feel free to comment and debate with me, but I do ask that you are civil and not harsh, as any comments which are basically swear words and insults will automatically be deleted. Also any text that is in orange (and often bold) is a Hyperlink to either a source, or a previous post for background reference.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Back to the Future Part III


After recieving a 70-year-old letter from Doc (Christopher Lloyd) telling Marty (Michael J. Fox) he's in 1885 Marty discovers that Doc was shot dead only days after writing the letter, so he uses the DeLorean (found in a mine) and drives into the Old West of 1885 to save Doc's life. However, three things complicate this. Firstly, the gas tank of the DeLorean gets a puncture making it impossible to be driven back to 1985, secondly, Marty gets on the wrong side of 'Mad Dog' Tannen (Thomas F. Wilson), the guy set to shoot Doc and his own life is put at stake, and, thirdly, Doc falls in love with school teacher Clara Clayton (Mary Steenburgen) after saving her life.

After Back to the Future Part II (1989) I was slightly worried about watching this as Part II killed most of the magic of the original, and what hadn't been killed I thought would be done so with a Part III. I was, however, wrong. The set pieces are incredibly detailed with Saloons, blacksmiths, the works, creating a true Old Western feel, almost on a par with films such as The Magnificent Seven (1960) and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969). The costumes also help create this feel, with them designed so carefully to match the clothes people genuinely wore in the Old West - the boots, the ponchos, the hats, every item of clothing so lovingly detailed.

As for the narrative, it does what the narrative of Part II could not - stays fresh throughout. There is no sense of cramming of ideas, with significant character development and well-written gags. And it also feels so fresh as the narrative centres on Doc. Both the 1985 original and Part II centred on Marty and his family and by the end of Part II you just feel fed up of it all being Marty, Marty, Marty, and feel that Doc really needs some really good development as it's been almost nothing but Marty trying to save his various relatives past and present. Never before has Doc's character been so interesting and enjoyable to watch, and Doc becomes a relatable character who is strong-willed and carries the film just as Marty carried the original.

So, all-in-all, it can never match the magic and beauty of the original - let's face it how many sequels are on par with the original - but it is better than Part II and is beautifully designed, well-written and an excellent conclusion to the film series that made a star out of Michael J. Fox and Robert Zemeckis one of the biggest directors in Hollywood.

Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Mary Steenburgen, Thomas F. Wilson, Lea Thompson, James Tolkan, Matt Clark, Christopher Wynne, Sean Sullivan, Mike Watson, Dub Taylor, Harry Carey Jr, Pat Buttram, Elisabeth Shue.

Saturn Awards: Best Supporting Actor (Thomas F. Wilson), Best Music (Alan Silvestri).
Saturn nominations: Best Science Fiction Film, Best Director (Robert Zemeckis), Best Supporting Actress (Mary Steenburgen), Best Costumes (Joanna Johnston).

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