Great Scott! Today is the future! Well, at least for Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) and Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox), who traveled to Oct. 21, 2015 in “Back to the Future: Part 2” to save Marty's children. (He arrived at 4:29 p.m.)
While the 1989 film exaggerated how far technology would advance by 2015, it did make some bold predictions that have come true, like big-screen televisions, video conferencing and hands-free video games.
Here are some predictions that were hits, and a couple of misses:
News drones: A USA Today drone is seen during a crucial scene flying around the Hill Valley Courthouse taking pictures. Today, major media companies are considering using drone technology for news gathering purposes.
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Wireless video games: At one point in the movie, Marty is mocked by a few kids for showing his prowess at a video game that you actually have to touch to play. The youngsters were accustomed to gesture-controlled systems like the Wii and Xbox Kinect that are in use today.
Hollywood’s obsession with sequels (or reboots): Marty gets a scary surprise when a holographic great white shark tries to eat him outside a theater showing “Jaws 19.” Hollywood is not quite there yet, but with the slew of sequels and reboots dominating theaters in recent years, the sequel excess the film depicts isn't hard to swallow.
Big-screen TVs and video conferencing: In the film, Marty is seen walking past an antique store selling boxy television sets from the 1980s. Around Hill Valley, huge flat-screen television sets are everywhere, in public and inside homes, some with multi-screen viewing, much like now.
We also see old the older, future Marty get a video call from a business associate named Douglas J. Needles, whose personal data flashes at the bottom of the screen. It's a fairly good representation of basic Skype or FaceTime apps used widely now.
Wearable technology: The film features several characters who sport ugly, technology-enhanced glasses with cameras and real-time information retrieval devices. Sounds a lot like Google Glass, Sony SmartEyeglasses, doesn't it?
Hoverboards: This is the biggest disappointment to many “Back to the Future” fans. The hoverboard, which was to replace our skateboards, was a character of its own in the second "Back to the Future" installment, and while are optimistic that such technology isn't far off, it’s still pretty far in the future, much like flying cars.
Even today, Doc Brown won’t be uttering the words, “Where we’re going, we don’t need roads.”
There are some predictions made in the film that could happen down the line.
The 1st female president: A USA Today from 2015 refers to the president of the United States as a “she.” While it has not happened yet, it might yet in 2016. Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Carly Fiorina are strong contenders to win their parties' nominations, so the filmmakers might be able to say that they called it.
The Chicago Cubs winning the World Series (and Miami having a MLB team): In the movie, a virtual marquis flashes a news story saying the Cubs swept the World Series, defeating a Miami franchise with an alligator as its logo.
We are currently deep into the MLB postseason and one of the teams vying for a World Series spot is none other than the Chicago Cubs. (The Miami Marlins didn't make it to the playoffs.) The Cubs – who have not won the World Series since 1908 and last made it to the Fall Classic in 1945 – are in a 3-0 hole against the New York Mets in the National League Championship Series. But, hey, anything can happen.
California demographics: Set in Hill Valley, California, the movie's cast includes a distinct scarcity of Latino or African-American actors. In reality, in June of this year Hispanics overtook whites as the largest ethnic group in California.
10/21/15! The Future is NOW! Doc Brown has a special message just for you. #BTTF2015
Posted by Back to the Future Trilogy on Tuesday, October 20, 2015
"Back to the Future" Day is being celebrated Wednesday with an appearance by the original cast at a Lincoln Center screening in New York City, as well as several fan-centric events and more than 1,700 theaters hosting screenings across the country. Michael J. Fox is also scheduled to be a guest on ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live!"