[Crash course for newcomers: We’re conducting a three-year experiment in which, for every year, we have to watch the same movie once a week. I had Top Gun last year, in the category Movie You Don’t Love, But Don’t Hate. This year I have Back to the Future for Movie You Love. Check out what everyone else is watching on our Cinemanauts page. These are my experiment results for December 2013.]

I’ll be completely honest; I didn’t really have time to think about Back to the Future in December, because I was busy watching a shitload of other time travel movies all month long. Between that and trying to wrap everything up for Year Two of the Cinema 52 experiment, there wasn’t a lot of extra room for the DeLorean to drive through my brain.

Or fly.

And yet, in all my rushing around and getting precious few hours of sleep, I came to see Michael J. Fox as my spirit animal. You see, poor Michael was working on Back to the Future and Family Ties at the same time, and was reportedly only getting five hours of sleep a night. There were many occasions when I, too, would realize that my writing efforts left me with only five hours to snooze, and I would frequently think of Mr. Fox and remind myself that losing a little sleep is okay if that time is used to fuel creativity and craft something for others to enjoy. Except he made a successful sitcom and my favorite movie of all time, while I made… this website.

Okay, the finished products aren’t comparable, but our dreamy 28-year-old physiques? Samesies.

So, while I wasn’t swept up by anything specific from the world of Back to the Future, the struggles of bringing it to the big screen were constantly fueling my drive to work harder on a silly time travel thing. And that’s really all I’ve got for the last month of this project. Perhaps I finally found a way to stay distracted– oh, wait, I had a dream that’s sorta relevant to Back to the Future. Maybe.

December 8th, 2013 – I dreamed I was vacationing with my family at the historical site of the world’s first confirmed time portal (no longer active). While watching a documentary about the site on my laptop, an old-timey guy that looked like Terence Stamp walked by and the documentary began to change in real time.


I could say December was the month to prepare for putting Back to the Future behind me, but it’s not like I’m abandoning the movie forever. I’m always thinking of it, and I’ve been able to watch the whole thing in my head from beginning to end long before this experiment began. I’m a bit tired from the act of viewing the film, but it nevertheless presents a world that I enjoy repeatedly analyzing. I’m probably still going to watch it once a year, like I always do, and I’m still going to enjoy it. December wasn’t about letting go; it was about appreciation upon a return to normalcy.

Godspeed, you beautiful, clever, entertaining work of art, you.

Last year’s 52 weeks of Top Gun still managed to squeeze something practically Pavlovian out of me in the final month of 2014. Way to ruin my big, emotional sign-off, you dumb plane movie.

December 20th, 2013, 3:24am – While discussing footage of Maine politician Mike Michaud, I unintentionally called him “Commander Mike Michaud” and couldn’t figure out why that had such a nice ring to it. After a couple of hours, I realized it’s because Viper from Top Gun is introduced to the pilots as “Commander Mike Metcalfe.”

Aww, they look like they’d be friends. Let’s hang out, guys.