Marty and Doc are back for another adventure, and this time they are cowboys. Because why the hell not? This is a period piece like the first film, only Marty and Doc are in Hill Valley in 1885. Part II and III were shot back to back, so there is a strong sense of continuity between the two sequels.
A lot of people like this movie. I think they just like seeing Little Marty dressed up like a Little Cowboy. It is the weakest installment of the trilogy. For a movie series involving a time machine, and all the ideas introduced in the second part, it is a real let down to have them be in the old west. They could have done anything or gone anywhere, and it’s pretty lame to have them be cowboys for the whole movie.
ZZ Top makes an appearance as the band at the clock tower festival. The only guy in ZZ Top with out a beard is named Frank Beard. That’s your fun fact for the day.
It is kind of weird how Doc mentions multiple times how he wished he never invented the time machine because it causes nothing but trouble. But then he goes ahead and invents a flying train time machine and takes his wife (that he shouldn’t have ever met or married) and his two creepy kids with him as he goes back and fourth through time and space, probably causing all sorts of alternate timelines and parallel universes. I guess his character doesn’t really grow or develop.
The first film is classic. The second was a fun and interesting look at time travel, bringing up ideas of paradoxes and alternate timelines. And the third is a let down. It has its moments, but the story is a let down. The first one is more than a period film because Marty gets to interact with his parents when they are teenagers. That is a great concept. The third one is a dumb period piece. The people of 1885 have no impact on his life in 1985. Sure Marty gets to hold his great-grandfather and meets his Irish ancestors, but that doesn’t compare to the weird love triangle between his parents and him in the first film.
This film has its moments. But most memorable things are just an homage or references to the first two films, like seeing the clock tower being built, or seeing relatives to Hill Valley citizens that we’ve met in the first two movies. Buford “Mad Dog” Tannen is a great version of Biff, a dumb bully with a gun. Clara Clayton was unnecessary character. Good for Doc for getting some loving, but her character is annoying and not well thought out.
It is a decent movie, but the first two were superior. Time travelling sequels should be about time travelling and not about being cowboys.
Critically Rated at 10/17