In case you haven’t heard (where the hell have you been?), today is the day that film fans have been waiting 29 years for: it’s Back To The Future Day. October 21, 2015 was the destination that Doc Brown took Marty McFly and his girlfriend Jennifer Parker to in Robert Zemeckis’ great Back To The Future Part II - and people have been celebrating the synced date by looking back on the movie’s depiction of what our world looks like today. Now we’re doing our part by ranking the best of the amazing gadgets that that the film depicted.
Taking into consideration only the Back To The Future technology that doesn’t actually exist in our current world (video calls and biometric scanners are out), we’ve selected our 10 favorite gadgets from the movie and ranked them below. What is number one? Read on to find out!
10. Holographic Advertisements
The proliferation of holograms definitely sounds cool, just because the technology would actually be neat to see in real life, but it has its downsides as well. For example, do you really want to be just minding your own business on a street corner and suddenly get attacked by an advertisement for Jaws 19? That’s a pretty terrible day-to-day experience that might be cool once or twice, but eventually get super old and irritating.
9. Dog Walking Drone
Owning a dog is a lot of fun, but it’s also a lot of responsibility. That fact was surely the inspiration behind the dog walking drone featured in Back To The Future Part II. Sadly, this device would probably be exploited by lazy dog owners who don’t care enough about their pets, but it would definitely be helpful if you’re just too busy to go for a walk, or are on vacation and can’t find a dog walker.
8. Self-Tying Laces
Do we really need self-tying laces? Not really. Laces are not only very easy to tie, but also quick and don’t exactly require a ton of energy. But that doesn’t mean that self-tying laces aren’t super cool or make us any less excited about the prospect of someday owning our very own pair of Nike Air Mags (opens in new tab). Gone would be the days of not only your shoes coming untied by accident, but also trying them too tight or too loosely. That’s a world I want to live in.
7. Floating Back Fixer
Hurting your back is rough, simply because it means that practically every move you make starts to hurt. It’s why I can have a lot of appreciation for the floating back fixer that George McFly uses in Back To The Future Part II. Not being a doctor, I have no idea how effective this machine would actually be, but if it were to actually work then scientists and engineers should already be 26 years into developing it.
6. Food Hydrator
A part of me does wonder if the taste of the food featured in Back To The Future Part II is at all affected by the dehydrating/hydrating process, but assuming that it’s not, then hopefully this technology will eventually become a part of our everyday life. Not only would it make preparing meals incredibly easy, but it would also make it extremely simple to send a great deal of food to people and areas suffering from starvation.
5. Auto Adjusting/Drying Clothes
Real world technological advancement has led to the public sale of hydrophobic sprays that can prevent items and clothing from becoming wet, but we still don’t have anything close to the amazing jacket that Marty McFly wears in Back To The Future Part II - which not dries itself after the hero’s hoverboard mishap, but even has the capacity to grow and shrink to fit perfectly on a person’s body. This would certainly make shopping a hell of a lot easier (no need to try anything on!), but clothes probably also last a lot longer.
4. Sleep-Inducing Alpha-Rhythm Generator
A bad night’s sleep is the worst. You wake up feeling miserable, and that particular feeling seems to follow you throughout the day as everything becomes stupid, annoying, or enraging. If we actually had EZ Sleep’s Sleep-Inducing Alpha-Rhythm Generator, however, all of this would be put in the past. At night, you just point the two lights at your face, and before you know it you’re getting the most restful sleep of your life.
Can anyone honestly say that they walked away from a screening of Back To The Future Part II without wanting a hoverboard of their very own? While surely dangerous – just like any skateboard – they look like they’re a ton of fun, and also a good method of transportation. It’s true that they have their limitations – like lower-power models struggling to work over water – but I wouldn’t even hesitate picking up the real deal if it worked exactly how it does in the film.
2. Weather Control and Scheduling
Weather prediction has certainly come a long way since Back To The Future Part II, but sadly we still haven’t gotten to the point where a government body called "The Weather Service" can schedule when it’s going to rain. It’s a shame it doesn’t exist, because it could not only stop or prevent major disasters (stopping the California drought would be nice), but also save lives. It would even be beneficial for all of us on a day-to-day basis, just because it would allow us all to plan our schedules better around necessary but dreary weather.
1. Mr. Fusion
The Mr. Fusion Home Energy Reactor has a fairly small role to play in Back To The Future Part II, but given that it’s an invention that could potentially solve the world’s energy problems, it deserves very special recognition. The idea of turning garbage into fuel is one that today’s scientists only dream about, and if the technology were actually invented it could change everything. The version featured in the film isn’t 100% ideal, as it can really only power the DeLorean’s time circuits and flux capacitor and not the car itself, but it is the ultimate step in the right direction.
NJ native who calls LA home and lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran who is endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.
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