Back to the Future. [Spoilers inside]

That moment you realize that, at the end of the first BTTF, Doc Brown already knows Marty is going to be using the DeLorean to go back to the past all while giving him the lowdown on what it is, what it does, how it works, the example (“When this baby hits 88 miles an hour, you’re going to see some serious shit”), etc.
(because by that time, he already had the letter Marty gave to him–in the past–in his pocket, taped up).
Mindblown! :eek:

Must have been hard to go through all of the motions, act normal, and not be tempted to tell Marty anything about the huge adventure he’s about to go on…

Time travel in BTTF is NOT self consistent like in the first Terminator movie, so it is very possible Doc at that point hasn’t got the letter because Marty hasn’t gone back in time YET.

Yes it is more confusing than the more popular self consistent timeline model.

So you’re saying that in that ending scene, right up to the point where Doc gets shot with bullets and falls to the ground, he’s really dead and didn’t have the letter or the bulletproof vest on or any of the knowledge about Marty having been in the past…

…but as soon as Marty and the car disappear (going back into the past), all that stuff suddenly appears magically in 1985 (the letter, the vest, and the memories)?
Maybe. I see what you’re saying. But it would stand to reason more (I feel) that Doc just already knew what was going to happen (at that point), hence one of the major reasons for showing him and explaining all that stuff to him (including telling him the precise time to be there and even waking him up and telling him to hurry when Marty fell asleep earlier in the movie–at the beginning)
(although one could argue the first time it happened, it was definitely all real. Me, I’m one of those who believes more of the “Whatever happened, always happened” type…in which case, if we had seen a few minutes after Marty first leaves in the car (at the beginning), we’d have then seen the 2nd, “later” Marty come running up—we just didn’t see that part because the film cuts away and follows the first Marty’s POV)

The movie(and the sequels) show how in the BTTF universe time travel changes slowly propagate throughout time. Otherwise Marty stopping his parents from meeting which lead to his conception would have made him go POOF.

EDIT:I also prefer the self consistent, whatever happened happened model but BTTF goes out of it’s way to show that is NOT the rules it works on. Remember how the parents Marty returns to at the end of the movie are radically different in personality than the ones he left at the beginning? His parents have changed due to his actions.


Proof: Doc gets shot at Twin Pines Mall.

Marty goes back to November 5th, 1955, when old man Peabody owned all the land and had a crazy idea about breeding pine trees. In his escape from Peabody’s farm, the Delorean runs over one of the two pine trees at the edge of the property.

After Marty’s return from 1955, he rushes to save Doc, but arrives too late and sees the shooting. . . at Lone Pine Mall.

The Doc at Twin Pines Mall was shot dead, bereft of any foreknowledge. The Doc at Lone Pine Mall had Marty’s letter and was wearing the bullet-proof vest.

Crazy theory: The second Marty at the end of the movie knows that to protect the Timeline he can’t go back to 1955 so they program the Time Machine to go into the far future after the Sun engulfs the Earth and Marty 2 sacrifices himself for the good of Marty 1 and the universe.

Crazier Theory: Marty has no idea that is about to happen but Doc Brown programs it that way to save the Timeline without Marty 2’s consent.

Yes, I know…that was my point.

That THAT Doc (the one at Lone Pine Mall) already KNEW that THAT Marty (the one at Lone Pine Mall) was going to go back to the past (all during the time he was explaining the time machine and that stuff).

I think either we’re talking about two different things or you’re not understanding what I’m saying.

I’m saying the Doc at the end of the movie already knew Marty had to go back in time.
If you claim that that stuff doesn’t happen UNTIL that Marty gets in the car and actually vanishes, then how do you explain it being Lone Pine Mall even when he’s still there? It should have been TWIN Pines Mall still UNTIL HE GOT INTO THE CAR AND DISAPPEARED (in which case, it would have magically changed to “Lone Pine Mall” in that very instant).

That’s not what happened, though…
It was ALREADY “Lone Pine Mall” when the later Marty approached the sign, which leads to me believe that Doc ALREADY had the letter in his pocket too, at that point (and knew that the Marty he was talking to had to go back in time).

I think I see what you’re saying.

Yes, the Doc Brown at the end of the movie who is showing Marty how the car works at the Lone Pine Mall has read the letter and is wearing the vest. It’s not the same scene we saw at the beginning of the movie, where un-warned Doc shows the car to Marty and then is killed at the Twin Pines Mall.

Do we really need a spoiler warning for a 29 year old movie?

Bolding mine.

Yeah, I already knew the bolded part. :slight_smile: My point was just the first thing.

You never know, I’m not taking any chances. I recall another poster getting really angry (awhile back) for something that was spoiled in a topic about a really old and equally famous movie (although I don’t have a cite), so better safe than sorry, I figure.

What if someone time-traveled from 30 years in the past and the title of this thread caught their attention? You don’t want to spoil the canonical time travel movie of their era for them, do you?

You didn’t apologize because it’s not to scale.

Great Scott!

There really isn’t any coherent model for the time travel in any of the Back to the Future movies, and any attempt at associating the events of the movies with a coherent model is doomed to failure. Put simply, the movies don’t make any sense.

They’re a lot of fun, though.

This is the theory discussed by Cracked.

Am I going to have to explain temporal hysteresis theory again?

Just wanna say two things:
[li]Lest anyone forget, we are now only months away from the second film’s 2015 setting(!)[/li]Years & years ago Michael J. Fox was on Letterman and he mentioned that fanboys would often come up and ask him crazy, complicated time-travel theory questions like these. He said he’d very politely just shrug and say, “I don’t know, they just pay me to walk around and say lines…”[/ul]

I’m pretty sure **BigT **worked out a model that is self-consistent between all the BttF movies.

I’m betting that somehow Doc and Marty going back to 1885 is why now we can’t have hoverboards.

Then there’s this.