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Back to the Future (BFI Film Classics) Paperback – August 17, 2010

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Back to the Future (BFI Film Classics) + The Shining (BFI Film Classics) + 2001: A Space Odyssey (BFI Film Classics)
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Editorial Reviews

Review

'The authors do an excellent job of bringing together a well researched look at a film that is loved the world over. Between talking about the films commentary on the 1950's teen culture and the nods to popular film culture at the time the film was made, they put together what is one of this year essential reads for any fan of film. Of all of the BFI film classics that I have read, this has been one of the best.' - Cine Talk

About the Author

ANDREW SHAIL is Lecturer in Film at Newcastle University, UK. He is the co-editor of Menstruation: A Cultural History (2005) and Neurology and Modernity (2009) and the editor of Reading the Cinematograph (2010).

ROBIN STOATE is a Doctoral Candidate in English Literature at Newcastle University, UK. He has contributed articles to the Blackwell Encyclopaedia of Literary and Cultural Theory (2010).

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Product Details

  • Series: BFI Film Classics
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: British Film Institute (August 17, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844572935
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844572939
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.3 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #743,173 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dash Manchette VINE VOICE on April 28, 2014
Format: Paperback
Back To the Future was a movie begging for a decent critical analysis. Blending different genres, presenting some rather penetrating and thoughtful issues, all the while packaging itself as a summer blockbuster, the movie was (and is) far more thought-provoking than it would appear at first glance. In this entry to the BFI Film Classics, it get some of the treatment it deserves.

BACK TO THE FUTURE (the book, that is) starts off pretty strong, discussing the New, New Hollywood that came after the bad boys of the 1970s who took on the studio systems and gave us movies that broke the traditional Hollywood stereotypes. These were the movies with antiheroes and ambiguous endings. Director Robert Zemeckis was at the forefront of the `New New' movement, hitching his wagon to the ever-rising star of Steven Spielberg. The book gives us some good background about the story that eventually became Back To the Future, as well as Zemeckis' rather rocky road getting there.

We also get some excellent analysis regarding blending of genres (time travel sci-fi, teenage romance, summer blockbuster), 1950s teen culture as filtered through a 1980s lens, the changing perspectives of atomic power, and even, yes, the saucy incest undertones between Marty and his mom.

Unfortunately we readers also must sit through a rather patronizing lecture about the racist aspects of the movie, with a white boy really inventing Chuck Berry's rock-and-roll and the same white boy suggesting to the black kid at the soda fountain that he should become mayor. Because, well, we all know blacks just cannot run their own lives and need whites to do this for them, or so the theory goes.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By R. Horton on November 26, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another great entry in the BFI series, this volume on Back to the Future is a fun read with some nice insight on the film. If you are a fan, pick it up and enjoy it for the companion that it is.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
From the mean time of the shots to the script's reaganite undertones, this book offers a torough formal, political and historical analysis of the film
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Don on July 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
A mixed bag. On the one hand, some of the analyses and discussions are truly thought-provoking, and insightful. Others seem slightly more ludicrous in terms of their leaps of logic, and the language is often unnecessarily dry and obtuse. Unfocused and somewhat frustrating - but still worth a read, for as short as it is.
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