Many of us know the story of how Marty McFly (Played by Michael J. Fox) ends up traveling to the (at the time) future – October 21, 2015. For those who do not know this story, I will ask just one thing: Why? Well, if you’ve come here for a rundown on the movie, you will be sad and perhaps a bit frustrated to find that this will not answer your burning questions, so you might as well watch this great film! This film, known as “Back to the Future” became one of the cult classic films of its time, pulling in over $300 million worldwide, and quickly becoming the highest-grossing film of 1985. Of course, when you make a film about time traveling in a modified DeLorean, this is bound to happen. The thing is, I could go on and on just talking about this amazing film – but that’s not why I’m writing this post. I’m writing this particular piece so we can dive back into a statement I had made in my first book, “Empty Spaces.” We will get to that in just a moment.
“Back to the Future” was released on July 3, 1985 making some very interesting predictions about our future – a future we have now officially made it to – however, things did not end up as hoped for. Marty McFly – through a big cluster of nonsense – ends up meeting an eccentric scientist by the name of Dr. Emmett “Doc” Brown (played by Christopher Lloyd.) The two end up meeting at a shopping mall; another occurrence largely unheard of in today’s society.
To shorten this long and complicated list of events, I will say that Marty must find a way to return to 1985, after having returned to 1955 and becoming his own mother’s romantic interest. On a third venture through time, once this has all been settled for the better, and the timeline has been…somewhat fixed, Marty and Doc Brown travel to today’s date – October 21, 2015.
As I had stated earlier, this film had made a plethora of predictions about our “future,” and now that we are living that aforementioned future, we see that fantasy has not fully become reality. Our vision of the future was a bright one, where technology only helped, without damaging our society. Things were supposed to be great and we were supposed to have self-lacing tennis shoes! Sadly, we are greeted with a grey, cracking skyline and empty, dusty spaces – so much of our history being forgotten. In this future, we don’t have self-drying jackets and smooth riding hover boards. We don’t have regularly moving traffic with the zooming speed of hover cars. We do however have people arguing over who traveled back in time and changed how the “Berenstein Bears” was originally spelled; I believe it to be with an “E” and I won’t change. Computers in our pockets, more roads and more buildings…we have also become more wasteful of technology, a bit consumed by it all and furthermore, wasteful of our society.
An Alternate Perception:
Images of blighted, broken industry, through the decay and destruction of nearly post-apocalyptic scenes have become a much greater intriguing subject for the people of our world in current time, it seems. Flashback to the 1960s or even the 70s when life was a bit more carefree, lacking technology and the constant grinding chatter of an online social networking presence. The general outlook on our future world was a wondrous one, filled with smoothly operating hover cars, tall chrome and glass buildings, complete with an incredibly perfect networking community nearly free of depression, or half of the issues we are facing today.
Fast-forward 30+ years later, and here we are stuck in a madhouse.
The average outlook on our future world has become one of a gray, crumbling city skyline. Our industry has fallen, the community is very loosely knit, and we left behind many structures we once found wonderful. Prices are up, jobs are down, and sometimes it feels like you can’t do anything without having your life synced to a gmail account. Perhaps we must disconnect for just a day?
All of the technology we had dreamt of having in the 60s, 70s, and in today’s case the 80s has come partly to creation in reality, but at the same time it has broken us down as a community, causing just as many problems as it has created innovations. With new technology constantly building, many of these places around us are being forgotten, tossed aside as trash and left to rot under the elements. Fields of trees and open areas full of nothing but nature are being dug up, torn up, torn down, ripped to dirt for brand new shops, car dealerships, etc. while the old ones are left behind.
Enjoy this day as they would have back then. If you’re in Ohio, the weather will be wonderful. We should all get out and have an adventure today! Let’s do something positive and bring some more positivity into this future. We have made it this far, so let’s not let it all fall apart so easily!
My spoken word piece “Our Future”
You can find prints of my work available for purchase here – http://www.johnny-joo.redframe.com