I had the privilege this past Monday night, October 25th, 2010, to attend one of the screenings of Back to the Future, the 25th Anniversary Digital Re-Release. I found about it the previous Saturday (a day they were also showing it) and decided to come back and see the movie on the actual 25th Anniversary – literally. This past Monday was exactly 25 years since Marty McFly first traveled back in time.
It was really quite an experience. I’d never seen Back to the Future on the big screen before – obviously not when it was first released (it’s older than me by exactly 1 year, 1 week and 2 days) and not as part of any special event before now (whether or not there’s ever been one, I’m not sure, but I’ve seen other films in re-release like Labyrinth and Casablanca). I was excited going into the event, simply due to the fact that it was a semi-historic occasion and I was happy to be part of it.
What I didn’t expect to enjoy so much was being part of an audience. I’ve watched the film with others before – 1 or 2 people – but never with a full theatre audience, who laugh in all the right places, cheered at the right moments, were there for the same reason I was and who applauded as the ending credits rolled.
The digital restoration went over very well. The quality was sensational.
I was also encouraged by the wide range of age groups I saw in the audience. Older folks, middle-aged folks, folks around my age, teens and young kids all of whom were enjoying themselves immensely, deep in conversation while proceeding out of the theatre at the end. It was very satisfying to see.
The film struck me as far more dated when watching it this time, how very 80’s it is, stressing the differences from the past vs. the [then] present; and yet it doesn’t phase the quality of the movie, and, clearly, is still able to reach the younger generations without seeming hokey or silly or confusing.
I wish it was playing again – I’d go see it in a heartbeat.