Character Analysis Of Robert Zemeckis's Back To The Future

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Though Robert Zemeckis’ Back to the Future is extremely successful in being a fun, blockbuster film, it does a very job in how it crafts the relationships between specific characters. Though Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) is facing a struggle to get back home, there’s another struggle occurring in the movie between his father, George (Crispin Glover), and town bully, Biff Tannen (Thomas F. Wilson). By tracing their acting and relative staging of these two in certain shots, a narrative between them becomes all the more clear, a representative battle of the outspoken against the bullies of the world. Towards the beginning of the film, before Marty gets sent into the past, we get our first look at the two in a rather one-sided argument, following …show more content…
One of the most entertaining things about this scene, and this shot in particular, is the way the two act, absolutely similar to their future selves at the beginning of the film. George once again speaks with a tentativeness in his explanation, almost knowing that Biff won’t really care about what he has to say. Just like before, aggressively cutting George off, Biff makes great use of his hands and goes in for the knocking, an irreverent and disrespectful mark of absolute dominance here. However, in the midst all this, that same concept of George’s inability of escape from earlier is emphasized in a very effective way here. By being placed in the middle ground, surrounded by Biff and company, George really has nowhere to escape; he’s unable to move away, like his older self had tried earlier in the film. An interesting thing to note, is the woman in the back, away from the struggle in the front; her complete lack of response to this situation in the scene further highlights George’s helplessness; with the exception of Marty (as seen through later parts in the film), he’s alone in his struggle against Biff, with those outside turning a blind …show more content…
In this new reality, George has become a more confident, successful individual, while Biff is cleaning the McFly family’s cars. Contextualizing the shot from 1:49:03 to 1:49:09, Marty is seeing this new Biff for the first time, while George making sure that Biff doesn’t “con” him and puts two coats of wax on the car. As the shot begins, Biff is in the middle ground in an extreme long shot; the camera seems to be elevated above where Biff stands, at maybe a normal shoulder level. After being yelled at, Biff comes around from the car with his hands up and flailing up and down as he profusely apologizes to George, addressing him as “Mr. McFly.” Moving into roughly a three-quarter shot, he clasps his hands together, speaking in an explanatory tone that’s permeated with a nervous laughter throughout. He has a clenched smile on his face, and as the scene ends, he gesticulates back to the car, and then puts a hand on his hip, holding a rag in the

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