Genre: Sci-Fi, Adventure, Comedy,
Release Date: November 22, 1989
Running Time: 108 minutes
MMPA rating: PG
The Good: Great soundtrack, Entertaining chemistry between the cast, A few hilarious moments,
The Bad: Tone comes off as unnecessarily corny, Lacks charm of the first,
Plot: 6.3/10- Part II’s biggest difference is that, while the first film managed to seamlessly pull off a goofy and lighthearted tone, Part II’s goofy moments, particularly Biff, come off as corny rather than charming. Of course, the time-travel plot, much like the first film, does lack logic, so that is not as much of an issue as it would be for more serious film. Otherwise, the pacing is solid, and its take on the future is even more humorous and amusing today than it was in 1989.
Characterization: 6.9/10- Back to the Future might not have the most complex characters but Marty and Doc Brown are iconic for a reason. They are fun to watch, and while they are not as fun as the first film, seeing the future version of Marty is still funny. However, Part II overuses the “Are you chicken?” phrase from the first film to an uncharacteristic degree.
Acting: 7.5/10- Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd’s chemistry is an excellent as ever. Their performances are what make the characters a blast to watch. Unfortunately, the dialogue is not nearly as smart or witty as the first film, and it shows as the delivery is noticeably weaker. The supporting cast is also weaker due to the campy script.
Special effects: 7.0/10- Part II’s effects hold up surprisingly well. Nothing is groundbreaking, but it at least looks good. The old-age makeup is the weakest aspect as it is glaringly obvious.
Soundtrack: 8.7/10- Alan Silvestri’s iconic theme from the first film returns along with new tracks to compliment the futuristic setting. However, the score as a whole is not nearly as memorable as the first.
Humor: 7.5/10- Part II is still a funny movie. The humor may not be as smart, but there are plenty of laughs to be had at the zany dialogue and amusing view of the “future.”
Entertainment Value: 7.7/10- Thanks to the humor and characters, Part II is, if nothing else, a fun movie. And it is one that I would watch again on occasion, albeit not nearly as often as the original film.
Overall: 7.0/10- Despite all its flaws, Back to the Future Part II is an entertaining, albeit disappoint, sequel. It may lack the charm of the original, but that does not mean it is a bad or boring film, and it is necessary viewing before watching the much better Part III.
Closing comments: Back to the Future Part II may not have accurately predicted much about the future. But without it, who knows if we would even have tried to make a hoverboard, and even if the Cubs lose, they have gotten closer to winning the World Series for the first time in years! Considering how inaccurate most films are at predicting the future, you have to admit, Part II did a mighty fine job.
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