For all of you who loved traveling with Doc Brown and Marty McFly, guess what . . . today is the day they went back to the future.
Part 2 of this classic trilogy begins when Marty, played by Michael J. Fox, has just made it back to 1985 from his visit to 1955, saving his parents' marriage and ultimately his siblings, and his own livelihood. Doc Brown, played by Christopher Lloyd, arrives in his Delorian and urges Marty that they must absolutely go back . . . to the future. Marty hops into the Delorian with his girlfriend Jen, played by Elisabeth Shue, and together they travel to precisely Wednesday Oct. 21, 2015.
Check out some of the most iconic inventions from this 1986 film, according to screenwriter Bob Gale and director Robert Zemeckis, and whether or not they're part of the present day or still in the future.
Future! While we are still waiting for the day when the flux capacitor will make any car fly, there is a flying vehicle available that resembles a transformer more than anything else. Aeromobil and Terrafugia both have prototypes of a functioning car that has retractable wings that turn it into a small plane, truly providing door to door travel. While both are still off the market you can pre-order your Terrafugia flying car now.
Eyewear and Facial Recognition
Present! Doc Brown has a pair of binocular-like glasses that are able to get information on the go and take pictures. Today, these are known as Google Glasses. And, iPhones now use facial technology — you can also control your iPhone with your head movements.
Motion-Controlled Video Games
Present! Wii and Kinect for Xbox have had motion-controlled games for some time now.
Self Tying Shoes
Future! In 2011, Nike created the MAG, replicas of the shoes Marty wears in the film. They look the same but lack the self tying capacity. There are rumors however that Nike will release self-tying shoes later this year.
Present! Many companies use thumbprint security, but it is most commonly used to unlock the screens of iPhones.
Past! Although we cannot add on 30 to 40 years of our lives like Doc Brown can in the film, we most certainly can smooth wrinkles and repair our hair. Hello, Botox!
Present! Who can forget the hologram of the movie Jaws 19 coming down to “attack” Marty on the street? This cinematic experience can now be enjoyed at a 3D iMax theater. We also saw our first holographic performance of Tupac at Coachella two years ago, and now there’s a QPI chip that will allow holographic projections from smart phones. And today people are obsessed with franchises and sequels, The Fast and the Furious' seventh iteration is proof!
Future! Not yet. But we do have dirt-resistant, self-cleaning fabric now. So there’s that.
Present! In the film, there are flying news cameras that capture Biff and his crew getting arrested on the cover of USA Today. Those flying cams today are better known as drones and are readily available for purchase.
Future! One of the most iconic inventions of the future featured in the film is the hoverboard. A skateboard sans wheels that floats on any surface except water. The company Hendo has been working on a hoverboard that levitates thanks to magnets. Although you can’t quite ride it on any surface, it’s incredible to watch this demonstration on a copper halfpipe by pro skater Tony Hawk.
TV Video Phones
Present! Video calls were predicted since the 1964 World Fai,r and Bell Telephone even had a prototype, however this had not been developed when the film was released in 1989. Video chatting has become so common with Skype and Facetime that we forget they were a far-fetched idea 30 years ago. We can even display our calls from our devices onto a TV, just like in the movie.
Present! During the movie Marty is approached to sign a petition using a handheld device to save the clock tower. This is comparable to an iPad.
World Series Prediction
Present! Well, sort of. One of the most bizarre predictions of the future has to be the baseball stats featured in the movie. Florida didn’t have a major league baseball team until 1993, four years after the movie was released. Today, the state has two major league baseball teams: Miami Marlins and the Tampa Bay Rays. Marty is shocked to hear of the Florida teams but is even more surprised when he finds out that the Chicago Cubs win the world series in 2015. Cardinals fan and screenwriter Bob Gale wrote this into the movie as a joke since the possibility of a win was so far fetched at the time. The Cubs have not won a world series since 1908, yet this year they are one of the four teams left in the MBL playoffs.
USA Today Predictions
Little attention has been paid to the USA Today newspaper featured in the movie. One of the headlines highlighted is, “Cholesterol May Be a Cancer Cure.” The very early stages of research were published in 1990 — a year after the film’s release — about the link of cholesterol and breast cancer. In 2013, an experimental drug was developed linking cholesterol as a possible cure to the disease. Whoa.
Another headline in the fictional newspaper is that Kelp prices have increased due to pollution in the South Pacific Ocean. It wasn’t until 1999 that Charles Moore discovered the Pacific Garbage patch — an area of plastic debris in the ocean estimated to be about the size of Texas to up to twice the size of the United States.
Written on the side of the paper reads: “President says she’s tired of reporters asking the same questions,” alluding to the fact that in 2015 a woman is in the White House. Hillary Clinton must be ecstatic about this one.