Now that filmmakers, screenwriters, actors, and, well, pretty much everyone in the entertainment industry except us, have been pulled away from their jobs, they’ve taken to social media with all their bored thoughts, insights, and recommendations. While talking about the Twitter trend #FivePerfectMovies on April 22, James Gunn and Chris Pratt stumbled into a debate about Back to the Future that only the screenwriter could settle. It started when Gunn got technical about what constitutes a perfect movie. “For me, a perfect film can be different from a favorite film, or a great film,” he argued. “A perfect film is something that sings from start to finish with no obvious mistakes, whether they be aesthetic or structural. There are no logical lapses.” As an example, he called out the Zemeckis classic. “Back to the Future SEEMINGLY could be imperfect (why don’t Mom and Dad remember Marty?), but I would still argue it’s a perfect film because there are reasons why this could conceivably be the case (time protects itself from unraveling, etc),” he added in a thread. “Or maybe I’m in denial. Who knows.”
The question of why Marty’s parents don’t recognize him has plagued Back to the Future fans for literal decades. But Guardians of the Galaxy star Chris Pratt knows. He chimed in with his own theory that ended up being pretty close. “Maybe they do remember him tho, not as Marty, as Calvin,” the nerd-off began. “When Marty returns to present day 1985, it could have been years since his parents would have perhaps originally noted the uncanny resemblance between their son and that kid from high school 20 years previous.” To ease James Gunn’s mind, Back to the Future’s screenwriter Bob Gale was able to fill the plot hole, some 35 years after its release, to The Hollywood Reporter. “Bear in mind that George and Lorraine only knew Marty/Calvin for eight days when they were 17, and they did not even see him every one of those eight days,” he explained. “So, many years later, they still might remember that interesting kid who got them together on their first date.”
He continued, “So Lorraine and George might think it funny that they once actually met someone named Calvin Klein, and even if they thought their son at age 16 or 17 had some resemblance to him, it wouldn’t be a big deal. I’d bet most of us could look thru our high school yearbooks and find photos of our teen-aged classmates that bear some resemblance to our children.” Congratulations to Chris Pratt! So, with no plot hole, does this mean Back to the Future just went from a perfect movie to an even more perfect movie? At least someone’s having a good week.