Back to the Future

Continuity mistake: In the chase scene with Marty and the Libyans, Marty is driving away from them. He changes into second gear but in the next shot he shifts into second gear again without changing back. (00:30:15 - 00:31:10)


Continuity mistake: When Marty arrives in 1955, he puts the DeLorean behind the sign, and walks into Hill Valley. When Marty and the 1955 Doc come back later, the DeLorean is facing the other way round to what it was at the beginning (you can tell because at the start Marty pushes the BACK of the DeLorean AWAY from the Lyon's Estates billboard, but when they come later, the FRONT is facing TOWARDS the billboard). (00:35:05 - 00:51:15)

Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: I watched the film and the DeLorean does not change direction when behind the billboard; it faces the same direction both when Marty pushes it behind the billboard and when he and the 1955 Doc come back later.


Back to the Future mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Marty's been thrown back by the amp, the papers on top of him change between the first and second shot. Precisely a Polaroid photo, a poster/map and a vase are missing. (00:04:20)


Continuity mistake: After George lays Biff out, Marty pulls the family photo from his pocket. The way he holds it suddenly changes, judging by the position of his index finger as the shots change. (01:23:45)


Continuity mistake: At Twin Pines Mall, when Marty is recording Doc Brown, Marty is raising the video camera to record Doc Brown saying, "No, no, no, this sucker's electrical," but when this piece of film is played back in the Doc's garage in 1955 it appears as if Marty was already recording when the Doc starts speaking. (00:25:15 - 00:50:40)


Continuity mistake: At the beginning of the film, when sending the DeLorean into the future, the wide shot shows the DeLorean heading for Marty and Doc then disappears leaving a trail of fire. Notice the cut as the car park goes from being dry to wet with puddles. (00:20:00)

Paul Andrews

Continuity mistake: When Marty is at the "Start" line waiting for the alarm clock to ring, he moves up his return time and the engine stalls out. Next we see Marty turning an ignition key with several other keys on a chain like the ones used on ceiling fans with the little balls and a plastic fob with the paper insert that reads 555-1138 Out-A-Time on it. After Marty arrives back In 1985 in town square, he pauses and gets out for a moment. While returning the the car he puts the DeLorean in drive and again the car stalls out. Again we see Marty restarting the DeLorean, we see a different set of keys. The key mysteriously changed in the time travel to an after market type with a thin wire ring on it, no key fob and the other keys are missing. (01:38:43 - 01:42:44)

Continuity mistake: When the Doc is trying to pull the cable to connect it the cable is stuck and when he pulls the cable hard the other connection breaks off. Watch when it breaks off you cn see that after Doc pulled it the cable gave him more length and would surely get Doc's arm to the other cable but when they show the Doc a second after he hasn't moved one bit. (01:39:35)


Continuity mistake: After Doc accidentally unplugs the cable and is sending Marty back, he unplugs the cable 15 seconds later and it shows Doc, and the clock's hand change. A split second later the clock's hand changes again.

Continuity mistake: While being chased by Biff, after Marty knocks down a man and a woman, the man stands up and helps the woman stand up, but a frame later he is rolling on the floor with the woman on top of him.


Back to the Future mistake picture

Continuity mistake: George McFly's holding a pen in his right hand, then a cut to a wide shot reveals him not holding a pen as he rests his arm away from his body on the table. Then when the camera cuts back his arm is back in front of him holding the pen. (00:14:10)

Paul Andrews

Continuity mistake: Marty is hitching a ride on the back of a jeep, a wide shot shows him going past and beyond the 'Lou's Aerobic Fitness Center' next to the Texaco garage, there's a cut to his skateboard then back to a medium shot of him going pass the same fitness centre again, this time waving to the people inside. (00:06:00)

Paul Andrews

Back to the Future mistake picture

Continuity mistake: Cafe 1955, when Marty enters for the first time. The arrangement of the coats on the rack to the right-hand side of the cafe doors changes upon Marty's initial entrance and returning to the counter after using the phone booth. (00:35:50 - 00:36:40)

Paul Andrews

Back to the Future mistake picture

Continuity mistake: In the cafe, the menu in front of Marty changes after Biff leaves. It starts looking like an ice-cream menu, with swirly lines at the top, but just before the future mayor comes into shot, the design on the front changes completely. (00:38:15)

Back to the Future mistake picture

Continuity mistake: Beginning of film. When Marty arrives at Twin Pines as the Doc requested he cruises up alongside Einstein on his skateboard, saying "Where's the doc, boy?" There's a cut to the truck opening, then back to Marty, and for some strange reason the yellow wheels on his skateboard have turned pink, but the reflection on the wet car park is still yellow. It cuts back to the DeLorean coming out of the truck then back to Marty, and his wheels are yellow again. This doesn't happen in the VHS version. (00:17:40)

Paul Andrews

Continuity mistake: As the Peabodys try to determine what crashed into their barn, the DeLorean's left indicator flashes throughout. When the family is onscreen, the barn's interior goes completely dark between flashes - whereas there should be illumination from the headlights as well. Compared to a later point in time where Marty opens the barn door to get shot at, it's not hard to notice how bright the headlights are. (00:31:50)


Continuity mistake: When the wind unplugs the cable connected to the tower and Doc runs towards it, the position of the cable changes between one shot and the other in barely half a second.


Back to the Future mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Marty chases after Biff on the borrowed 'skateboard', Marty is wearing a dark grey belt and a red/blue print shirt under his red/beige jacket. However, when Marty is hanging on to the front of Biff's car as they turn a corner (and in another shot), Marty (stunt double) is wearing a light brown belt and solid tan shirt. (01:07:00)

Super Grover

More mistakes in Back to the Future

Dr. Emmett Brown: Don't worry. As long as you hit that wire with the connecting hook at precisely 88mph the instant the lightning strikes the tower... Everything will be fine.

More quotes from Back to the Future
Back to the Future trivia picture

Trivia: In the battle of the bands scene, when Marty introduces The Pinheads, Huey Lewis, who provided "The Power of Love" for the film's soundtrack, plays the second judge from the left, and is the one who eventually says, "You're just too darn loud." (00:07:40)

More trivia for Back to the Future

Question: How is Marty able to play a 1980s videotape on a 1950s television set? Is this just another example of Doc's ahead-of-his-time inventiveness?

Answer: The video camera was in the DeLorean. With the right kind of adapter, which was common enough in the 80s that Doc might've had it on the camera or been able to jury-rig something in the 50s, it would have been possible to connect it into the antenna screws in the back of the TV like an old Atari and play it directly from the camera.

Captain Defenestrator

TVs in the 50s had a two prong antennae connection (two screws in the back that you put a prong antennae into) TVs in the mid 80s also had this. The coax connection (the one wire that screws in) was starting to become common, but, the two prong connection would have been more likely on any given TV at the time, so, whatever wire they used to preview recordings probably had that. very convenient that Marty brought those cords with him.

An old Atari 2600 RF Adapter would be how one would link a video camera to an old-fashioned television. A simple-enough part that Doc could probably make one with 1950s technology.

Captain Defenestrator

Answer: Video tape system back then could output an NTSC video signal, just like broadcast at the time, and up to HD in the 2000s. Usually there was a switch on the video device to change the output frequency between channels 3 or 4. Depending on what was an open channel in your area.

Answer: Doc is smart and eccentric enough to probably have such a thing randomly rattling around in the Delorian as old burger wrappers would rattle around inside a normal car. And Marty could also conceivably have such a thing at his or Doc's domicile for his own video gaming convenience.


More questions & answers from Back to the Future

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Check out the mistake & trivia books, on Kindle and in paperback.