Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably at least heard of the "Back to the Future" trilogy, if not seen at least one of the films. These movies are the pinnacle of modern science fiction, and it is one of the most well-known film franchises of all time. And if you’ve been on any social media in the past couple of weeks, you’ll know that this week marks the day when Doc and Marty McFly came to the future from 1985 to protect Marty’s kids. They came to October 21, 2015…which happens to be this Wednesday. So, in honor of this momentous day (and the fact that I really wanted to procrastinate and watch a movie), here’s a look at what "Back to the Future Part 2," released in 1989, got right about this year…and what it didn’t.
Right: 3-D movies
The creators of the movie really nailed this one – they believed 3-D cinema would be a staple of the future, and it very much is. This is something we now take for granted and think of as completely normal, but from the 80s it was definitely an interesting, exciting possibility for the future (although I think they're still working on the 3-D promotion part...and "Jaws 19.")
Wrong: Flying cars
While the “Skyway” looks cool on screen, that hasn’t quite become reality yet. Our vision of the future from 2015 still includes flying cars, just as the vision of the future from 1989 did. I think we’ll figure it out one day, but for now, all we can do is dream.
Right: Hoverboards, surprisingly
I’m just as shocked as you are. But, we actually do have some semblance of hoverboards. They’re not quite like the ones seen in the movie, but we’re definitely getting there. Keep an eye on this – for all we know, by the time we graduate we’ll all be hoverboarding around campus instead of trekking up and down hills every day.
Wrong: AT&T takes over everything
While many people in today’s world do use AT&T, it’s a pretty even split between that and Verizon. And, as far as technology brands go, Steve Jobs was busy perfecting the very first iMac computer in 1989 when the movie was released. Little did the makers of "Back to the Future" know, that in 30 years, an apple with a bite out of it would be everywhere you turn. There was no way for the makers of the film to anticipate the many incredible technological advances we would make in such a short span of time, or how Apple would literally be everywhere.
Right: Video calls
While in 1989, thinking about having a video call with someone on a small screen and being able to transfer it to a bigger screen seemed like an incredibly cool possibility of the future, we now know it is actually reality. We all use FaceTime and Skype constantly – it’s a great way to stay connected when you’re far away from people you care about, and are even useful for things like interviews.
Wrong: There is a “swift justice system” in which someone can be sentenced in two hours
No explanation needed. (In other words: it takes a lot longer than two hours.)
Right: Fingerprint technology
We use our fingerprints for practically everythingnow. I never actually have to type a passcode into my phone – I just put my thumb on the home button and the screen unlocks. In the (possibly near) future, I won’t be surprised if we’re using fingerprints to open doors, just as they do in the movie.
Wrong: Automatic clothing
Wouldn’t it be so nice to have a jacket that adjusts itself to your size and has a built-in drier? Or shoes that automatically close? Shopping for clothes and getting dressed everyday would be so much easier (and so much less effort). But, alas, we haven’t figured that one out yet.
Could go either way: the Cubs win the World Series
In "Back to the Future's" 2015, the Chicago Cubs recently won the World Series. In today’s world, the Chicago Cubs haven’t won the World Series in over 100 years (107, to be exact)…but that could all change in the coming weeks. If they beat the New York Mets in the current series they’re playing, they head to the World Series. And if they win that, then they not only make history but also make us wonder exactly what kind of crystal ball the creators of "Back to the Future" were looking into.
Check out this video of the two major "Back to the Future" icons discussing which predictions became reality: