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Back to the Future Movie Research & Thought Questions

Student #1: __________________________Date Assign: ____________ Due Date: _________
Other Students in Group: _____________________________________Score: ____________
Type response on a separate sheet of paper - use Courier 12 pt. font. Go online (Google) to get more info for your answers. Annotate your sources. You must have at least 4 different sources outside of Wikipedia. You can use Wikipedia footnotes & see also to find reliable information.
Director of Movie: ____________________ Main Actor name in movie: ___________________
Dad name: __________________________ Mother name: ______________________________
Professors Name: _____________________ Bully’s name: ______________________________
A. How does the director use lighting to tell the story this movie? (Give 1 example in each area)

1) Act I [Intro.] 2) Plot Point I 3) Act II 4) Plot Point II [Climax] 5) Act III [Resolution]


B. How did the director use cinematography to contribute to the enhancement of each area of the Story Structure? (Explain location of the one angle shot & one distance shot in each area, and its effect on the plot of that particular scene of the Story Structure.)
1) Act I [Intro.] 2) Plot Point I 3) Act II 4) Plot Point II [Climax] 5) Act III [Resolution]
C. What was the film’s sociocultural context in this movie? (Definition of Sociocultural (Adj.) of, pertaining to, or signifying the combination or interaction of social and cultural elements)


    1. as a work from a specific country

    2. as a work from a specific culture

    3. as a work representing a specific part of its society
    4. as a work made for a specific audience


    5. as a work made for a specific reason

D. Who was this film made for? How does the director address their audience with the plot of the movie? How do you know?


E. Explain what we learn about the background of this films plot and how does it fit in the culture of each time period? (Example: How does Marty fit into the cultural time period of both 1985 and in 1955?)
F. What do we learn about how the people of the 1950’s viewed Marty?

1. What were the farmer & family feelings & reception when he first arrived back in time?

2. Include feelings toward Marty through the eyes of Lorraine.

3. Include feelings his Dad.

4. Include feelings of Biff and his gang.

5. What were the teenagers his age feeling towards him during the dance?

6. How did feelings change at the end of the guitar scene at the dance, as it related to music & actions from the music of 1950’s and modern times? How did the social cultural not work?

Back to the Future Movie Research & Thought Questions
Student #2: __________________________Date Assign: ____________ Due Date: _________
Other Students in Group: _____________________________________Score: ____________
Type response on a separate sheet of paper - use Courier 12 pt. font. Go online (Google) to get more info for your answers. Annotate your sources. You must have at least 4 different sources outside of Wikipedia. You can use Wikipedia footnotes & see also to find reliable information.

Director of Movie: ____________________ Main Actor name in movie: ___________________

Dad name: __________________________ Mother name: ______________________________
Professors Name: _____________________ Bully’s name: ______________________________
A. Why do you think the director made this film what was his intent? Explain your reasoning?

B. What were some of Director’s others works?


C. How does this movie (Back to Future) fit within the Director’s other movies?

1. Does it share significant narrative or a thematic concern with the Director’s other movies

2. Does it share particular visual or a technical element with the Director’s other works.
D. Can you think of other films or filmmakers who have been influenced by this film or might have been influenced by this film? Explain your reasoning?
E. How does this director use sound to enhance Plot Point I & Plot Point II? Give one other specific example of how sound contributes to particular scene in the plot of the movie and one other specific example of how music enhanced a particular scene?
F. What are the institutional factors that may be important?

1. as a production of a specific producer (i.e. Walt Disney)

2. as a production of a specific institution (i.e. Disney studios)

3. as a production of specific economic factors (i.e. Studio film)

4. as a production of a certain political background (U.S. politics circa 1959)
G. How does the clock tower in downtown fit into the film to help us keep track of the narrative? How does the clock tower work SYMBOLICALLY in the film? What is its significance in the movie? Does a clock tower have any similarities or differences in any other movie? Name a famous clock tower, where it is located, and used in other movies? (Google Clock Tower in movies for more information)

H. Explain how the director in this movie uses in Act 2 - Plot Point 2 in this movie to achieve the tension in the film?

1. Explain why Plot Point 2 was expected to happen & necessary for the characters?

2. Explain was there any difference between Plot Point 1 and Plot Point 2?

3. Explain was there any similarities between Plot Point 1 and Plot Point 2?

4. Explain how the thunder & lightening played a important part in this movie? What part of the story structure was it used in? Did it help to add to the tension? What were the sounds & mis-en-scene of this scene and how did it help to add to the overall effect of this scene?

I. Explain how time travel took place in 1955 in comparison to 1985. Why was it harder to go from 1955 into the future than going back in history to 1955?


Back to the Future Movie Research & Thought Questions
Student #3: __________________________Date Assign: ____________ Due Date: _________
Other Students in Group: _____________________________________Score: ____________
Type response on a separate sheet of paper - use Courier 12 pt. font. Go online (Google) to get more info for your answers. Annotate your sources. You must have at least 4 different sources outside of Wikipedia. You can use Wikipedia footnotes & see also to find reliable information.
Director of Movie: ____________________ Main Actor name in movie: ___________________
Dad name: __________________________ Mother name: ______________________________
Professors Name: _____________________ Bully’s name: ______________________________
A. What was Doc feeling toward Marty during Act I the time Marty was back in time?
B. What was Doc feeling toward Marty during Act I? What was Doc doing for Marty in Act II? What were Doc feelings for Marty during Plot Point II-Climax?
C. What is the brief story structure of Back to the Future & how is it unusual from many films?

1. How does editing play a major role in this movie story structure?

2. Are there any similarities of story structure and editing that are similar in other movies like this one including ones done by this director?

D. What were some of the overall causes that Marty created or fixed by going back in time as it relates to the picture & his parents?

1. Include what changes were happening to the picture during Act 2?

2. Include what changes happened to the picture right at Act 2 plot point 2 as he was about to return to 1985?

3. Explain which role Marty was playing, the role of the Antagonist or Protagonist in this movie?

4. Had Marty had previous experience going through time? (What about the dog)

E. Give two examples where the towns people overall in 1955 were afraid of Marty?
F. How did Marty help assist his dad defending himself against the bully? (2 examples)
G. Explain how does this time travel movie Back to the Future have similarities & differences as it relates to three other time travel movies? (You are not allowed to use the ones discussed in class, or sequels - Research, list titles of movies, state genre & explain your answer) (Time travel is more of a theme rather than genre)
H. What could be the film’s historical fiction significance in this movie & the three other movies?

1. as a document of its time

2. as part of the history of film
I. How did the resolution in Act 3 seem to bring a conclusion to the movie?

1. Was it what you had expected?

2. What “truth” is presented by the film?

3. What do you know at the end of the film?

4. How do we know this?

5. Explain was there any difference in time when Marty returned back to 1985?





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