Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Robert Zemeckis: Director/Writer/Producer/Prophet

" I wish I could go back to the beginning of the season, put some money on the Cubbies!"  And that's just what I did when I recognized what year this was.  Whether I make some money back depends entirely on Robert Zemeckis and how good of a prophet he is.  That last quote was from Part II one of the the greatest franchises in cinema history: Back to the Future.  Back to the Future originally came out in 1985.  I wouldn't be born for 8 more years.  (Don't know how the world managed.)  So I'm not gonna sit here and write about the first time I saw it in theaters because that didn't happen.  The first time I saw it was sometime in the late 90's.  My uncle had the VHS trilogy set.  I borrowed the set and didn't give it back for a while.  I've said before that Jurassic Park is my all time favorite movie, but BTTF is in the Pantheon.  Definitely top 5, but even more likely top 3.  I could write a whole paragraph gushing about the series, so I think I will.

BTTF is most likely one of the most consistently good trilogies ever made, in terms of quality.  (The best in this category are The Lord of the Rings and original Star Wars trilogies.)  Now, yes, the original BTTF is clearly the best, but the second and third are also really good movies that kept the elements that worked in the first movie without tiring out the gimmicks.  When talking about sci-fi movies I usually write how there are good "science fiction movies" that are not necessarily good movies.  Back to the Future does not fall into that category.  Back to the Future is a really good movie that isn't limited by its genre.  It's a good comedy, a good adventure, a good sci-fi; you name it.  The story captivates you as you clutch your seat belt seats in your DeLorean.  It remains one of the most original movie plots ever written, in my opinion.  At their most dramatic moments, these movies have you at the edge of your seat, face gravitating to the screen.  Even with all the time travel, space time continuum talk, it doesn't take away from the adventure for people who don't like science jargon.  (I personally like time travel theory, but that's just me.)  The characters aren't just likable; they are absolutely adored!  This isn't a hyperbole: these characters might be one of the top 5 most lovable characters in the history of film.  I'm talking about everyone from George McFly, to Goldie Wilson, to Jennifer, to even Biff.  Sure, Biff is a bully, but we all still get a kick out of him when he gets common sayings wrong.  Then there is Marty and Doc, a legendary duo that has very few rivals.  Their friendship is sincere, their bond is unbreakable and you have to really be the most evil person in history to root against them.  The actors who play them, Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd, were casted perfectly.  No other actors could have played Marty and Doc.  Nobody!  This movie should never, under any circumstance, be remade.  This whole universe was written and directed by the amazing Robert Zemeckis.  (Writing credits go to Bob Gale as well.)

Robert Zemeckis doesn't get talked a lot when discussing great directors, and that's a shame.  Put his resume up against anyone and Robby Z can hold his own.  Besides BTTF, Zemeckis has also directed Who Framed Rodger Rabbit?, Forrest Gump, Cast Away, and a whole bunch of solid films.  The guy knows what he's doing behind the camera.  The Walk recently came out, and although it hasn't has a lot of buzz at the box office, the reviews are solid.  Some have said Oscar-worthy; who knows?  What I do know is that the movies he makes are generally really good movies, and although his directing style isn't as pronounced as, say, Quentin Tarantino, when you see a Robert Zemeckis film, you know it's a Robert Zemeckis film.  So I've established he's a good writer/director/producer.  But can we add /prophet to his title.  See, in Back to the Future Part II Doc takes Marty and Jennifer to the future so that they can get Marty's son out of trouble.  The date they travel to is October 21, 2015.  (Quick tangent: for the last couple of years people on social media have been putting false dates that Marty and Doc traveled to.  It happened at least 4 times.  It got me way more upset then it should have, but whatever.  This is not a false alarm.  This is the date.)  Part II was made in 1989, four years before I was born and 26 years before this year.  Zemeckis and Gale had no idea what the future would look like, so they took a shot in the dark.

A couple of things stood out from their version of 2015.  First, the kids there were their pants inside out.  I'm doing that as we speak so we'll call that a hit.  Power laces?  I know people are making them, but they're not out yet.  No flying cars, though considering how many bad drivers there are, I'm gonna chalk this up as a good thing.  Jaws 19 isn't out yet, but I'll give the movie credit for coming up with face to face video chat.  The big thing that's missing: the hovercraft!  Aside from the power laces, the only thing I really wanted from 2015 was a hovercraft.  Yeah, I don't know how to skateboard, but that shouldn't stop me from achieving my goals.  So far, looks like Robert Zemeckis' batting average isn't very high.  But here's one way he can finally achieve that /prophet title: the Chicago Cubs have to win, nay, sweep the World Series.  It can happen still.

Today the Cubs play Game 4 against the Mets down 3-0 in the NLCS.  A daunting task but if the Cubbies rip off 4 in a row they are in the World Series.  I like the Mets.  Daniel Murphy has been an absolute stud in the playoffs.  Yoenis Cespedes is still my dude.  If they end up winning it all I'll be really happy for them.  (In fact, I have no problem with any of these remaining 4 teams winning the chip.  Yes, even you KC.)  But I gotta pull for the Cubs here, both for Zemeckis' sake and my wallet's sake.  I know the odds don't look favorable and teams rarely don't come back from 3-0.  But I recall one team that did.  They named rhymed with Loston Led Lox and they had not one a World Series in 86 years.  They were down against the Yankees in the ALCS and things looked bleak.  But they beat the curse and ended up winning the World Series.  You know who else hasn't won a World Series in a long ass time?  The Cubbies!  The last time they won the chip was 1908.  I don't think I know anyone who knows anyone who was alive when that happened.  But the thing about fate is that it doesn't make any sense.  If Zemeckis is right then his name will be sung in Chicago.  They might erect a statue or even name a cocktail after him.  If he's wrong, no biggie.  He's still the guy who made the Back to the Future trilogy.

El Guapo is a talented blogger on the rise, regarded by many as a cross between Bill Simmons and Socrates.  Through real life experience and expertise in many facets of life, the Guaps aims to provide readers with unique takes that will enhance the way they think and live.  Keep up with his main blog Infinite Wisdom From El Guapo’s Brain.  NBA fans have to place to go with his basketball blog, Infinite Wisdomon the NBA.  Like him on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter and Instagram.  Leave comments in the section below.  Stay Guapo out there!

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