Back to the Future Part III

Corrected entry: In the final scene when Clara hands Doc the framed photo it is completely wrapped in brown paper. A moment later, when Doc hands the gift to Marty the piece which supports the framed picture (allowing it to stand on a table) is visible, even before Marty unwraps the package.

Correction: That's the back of the original photo of Doc standing in front of the clock tower that Marty just picked up from the wreck of the Delorean.

Corrected entry: In 1885 Marty uses the alias "Clint Eastwood." But at the end when Tannen threatens to shoot Doc if Marty doesn't come out to fight, Doc calls Marty by his real name, and no one seems to notice.

Correction: They'd have guessed it's some sort of nickname - like "Doc" instead of "Emmett L. Brown".

Corrected entry: Just before the train hits the inside of the ravine, the train explodes. It shouldn't just explode in midair.

Correction: Remember when Doc says when the boiler reaches 2000 degrees the whole thing will blow? That's what it was doing.


Corrected entry: At the end of the film, Jennifer has the fax from the second movie saying 'You're Fired'. Then, because Marty stood up to Needles, the message erased. However, Jennifer still has the piece of paper. If Marty didn't get fired in 2015, then there would be no fax, and therefore no piece of paper at all. Jennifer shouldn't have had the piece of paper.

Correction: Saying this would mean that the photograph in the first movie would disappear as it would have never been taken, and Doc and Marty never picked up the papers in the second movie, therefore the headlines wouldn't change, rather they'd disappear. But they *do* change, because they did pick up the paper themselves, as a sort of artifact from the future. Jennifer therefore would have brought back the fax paper from the future, but since the fax didn't print when events changed, there would be no message on the paper.

Corrected entry: After Doc went back to 1885, he put the Delorean in an old mine shaft. When Marty went to 1885 to find him he got a hole in his gas tank, and need gas. Well, all they had to do was get some gas out of the Delorean that Doc came back in. Would had saved a lot of time.

Correction: Oil and petrol are normally removed from a car for long-term storage. Although Doc could have kept the petrol he removed... This issue was also dealt with in the DVD commentary, in which it was speculated Doc didn't want to risk reopening the cave, potentially causing a cave-in and thus a paradox if the car can't be retrieved in 1955.

Correction: Gas becomes useless after sitting for a short period unused. It begins to lose its combustibility from oxidation and evaporation, degrading in three to six months.

Corrected entry: Okay, we're going to get a bit deep here. Doc and Marty found Doc's grave in 1955. Doc sends Marty back to 1885 to rescue Doc. Now.....remember....all hinges around the image on the picture. Once the grave stone is broken in the fight with Mad Dog Tannen the image of the grave disappears in the photo. Wouldn't the picture disappear too? No grave in 1885 means no grave in 1955 which means no reason to take a picture in the first place. But then again....once the grave is broken then there would have been no grave in 1955 for Doc to see. Therefore he would have never sent Marty back in the first place. HENCE...once the grave was broken....the timeline is fixed and Doc of 1885 would live happily ever after with Clara, Doc of 1955 would just work on getting Marty home, and Marty would have disappeared from the 1885 timeline and things would have continued from when Doc and Marty are digging out the old DeLorean. Told you it was deep.

Correction: Marty took the picture of the grave BEFORE he went back to 1885 and changed the past, so there's no logical reason why the picture itself would disappear. Obviously, he wouldn't take a picture of nothing, but he had already taken the picture, which is why only the grave disappears.

Corrected entry: In the scene at the start of the movie, the time machine is flying 50 feet or so in the air when it is struck by lightning and sent back to 1885. Later in the movie, we learn that the lightning destroyed the flying circuits. Assuming this is true, as soon as the time machine appeared in 1885, it would have fallen to the ground and been destroyed.

Correction: We can assume a flying car from a future where everybody has a flying car would have some kind of device to get it down safely in event of malfunction. Otherwise, cars would fall out of the sky everytime anyone had a minor problem.

Grumpy Scot

Corrected entry: When the Doc from 1955 is loading up the DeLorian after fitting the new time circuit controls, he hands Marty the walkie talkies. However, in at the end of Back to the Future II the Doc has the other walkie talkie with him. How can Marty have both of them? (00:15:54)

Correction: Doc probably put his walkie talkie in the car before he sealed it up in the mine shaft and Marty found it in there.

Corrected entry: When Doc and Marty hijack the train, they cut loose the rest of the train but keep the log car attached to the engine. Why? If they're using Doc's special "Presto Logs", then why need to drag an extra car that serves no use? They would've made 88 MPH in record time.

Correction: Locomotives used far more water than fuel. The water was carried in the tender (log car). Therefore, the tender would have to remain attached in order to supply water for the loco during the run.

Corrected entry: In the scene where Mad-Dog Tannen is waiting for Marty to come out of the salon for the show-down, Mad-Dog refers to Marty as 'DUDE', a term which was not used back in 1885.

Correction: Incorrect. Originally the word "Dude" was applied to fancy-dressed city folk who went out west on vacation. In this usage it first appears in the 1870s.

Corrected entry: When Doc and Marty find the Delorean in the mine, the tires have rotted off with time. It seems that all they had to do to run the car again was replace the tires. However, as any mechanic will know, in that amount of time not just the tires would have rotted. Every rubber hose and gasket, every piece of wire insulation, every bushing and grommet, and many other parts in the car would also need to be replaced. There would be no way to run the car short of completely rebuilding it.

Correction: There were 4 or 5 days between the lightning strike and the trip to 1885. If any car parts needed replacing, Doc could have done it easily. Notice that the DeLorean even sat higher off the ground in the drive-in, suggesting that Doc had to replace the axles. The DeLorean went through a lot of refit to make up for the 70-year storage.

Corrected entry: When Marty time-travels to 1885 and stashes the DeLorean in a desert cave, a black bear inexplicably appears and chases him. There are no bears of any species that inhabit the desert badlands.

Charles Austin Miller

Correction: The fictional town of Hill Valley, California, is not in any desert badlands. In BTTF III, a railway map shows Hill Valley as being in Northern California, near the Sierra Nevada Mountains, where there's lots of bears.


Correction: They may not live in the badlands, but they do travel through them. Several years ago, a bear in New Mexico made a journey of 70 miles through the desert from the forested mountains to the Pecos River near Roswell.

Corrected entry: Doc begins telling Marty about his accident with Rolls-Royce, before stopping himself and telling Marty it's better that he doesn't know. How exactly did Doc find out about the Rolls-Royce incident in the first place? When Doc was in the year 2015, he didn't actually talk to Marty or any of his family or Needles, so who told him about the Rolls-Royce incident? At that point, it had happened 30 years prior, so it's doubtful that a minor car crash from 1985 would still be the talk of the town in 2015.


Correction: In BTTF Part 2, they are there to rescue Marty's son going to jail, which in turn puts his daughter in jail. Doc said he did some research and found that the McFly family gets destroyed, that he traced the fall of the McFlys to that incident of Marty Jr committing the crime with Griff. He obviously found out about the accident while doing the research. Even Jennifer found out about the accident by overhearing family chatter, so it was no secret amongst the McFlys. Also keep in mind, in part one Doc does go to the future, but he is back before we see what he was up to. Marty did tell Doc to look him up when he gets there, so maybe he did speak to Marty.


Correction: A Rolls Royce is hardly a minor car to have an accident with. They are such a rare car, one being in an accident in Hill Valley would be unusual enough to be news.


Corrected entry: During the train sequence, when it's pushing the DeLorean, there is a wide shot of the green steam coming out of the train. The steam looks computer generated because it is far too bright and appears slightly away from the train. (01:36:40)

Correction: It may look like CGI, but in fact the widespread use of CGI special effects did not happen until the 1990s. Backdraft, from 1991, was the first use of realistic CGI fire, while Terminator 2 had the first realistic human movements generated by CGI. The train scene in BTTF 3 had some interesting special effects (such as the use of miniatures), but CGI wasn't on the list.

Corrected entry: When Marty finally returns back to 1985 on the finished train track the ravine has been renamed in honor of his alias "Clint Eastwood." But why? The townspeople wouldn't know it was him on the train and Doc wouldn't have been so foolish as to tell anyone "Clint" hijacked the train after becoming a hero from the Tannen fight. It should have still been called Shonash Ravine.

Correction: This is hardly a plot hole, since we don't know what happened after they went through time. It's likely "Clint Eastwood" became something of a local legend. After all, he did beat the toughest guy around. Given all the questions he and Doc were asking about the train, it's not unreasonable to think his legend got tied up with the ravine.

Corrected entry: When Marty asks the Doc if they can take Clara with them to the future, the Doc says no, because you mustn't tamper with the time continuum for your own benefits. However, in the second film, he does change the continuum for Marty and Jennifer's benefits, by going with Marty and Jennifer to change the future, so their son wouldn't go to jail.

Correction: The reason that he says that the space/time continuum shouldn't be tampered with is because of the repercussions of what he did in BTTF II. He is learning from his mistakes, and even says so later on in BTTF III. Plus, he was talking about changing the past and altering history. Changing the future is completely different. The future hasn't happened yet. As Doc said, "your future is whatever you make it."

Corrected entry: The jacket suit that Biff wears in the garage scene in 1985 in Part 3 is red and gray. It is green and gray in the other films.

Correction: The scene in BTTF 1 & 2 takes place on the Saturday morning after Marty returned to 1985. The scene at the end of this film takes place the next day (hence Marty's family think he's been to the lake with Jennifer in his cowboy garb - also check the scenes with the DeLorean showing the time travel destination input). There's no reason Biff should be wearing the same coloured jacket suit.

Corrected entry: When the train is pushing the DeLorean and "Clara" on the train and trying to get to Doc, Marty is in the driver's seat, then the next shot he's in the passenger seat to where he passes the hover board to Doc, then when Marty passes through time to Eastwood Ravine he's back in the driver's seat.


Correction: There is enough time in between the shots where Marty could easily hop between the 2 seats.


Corrected entry: In the shot where Doc and Marty hijack the steam train, the form of the coupling between the tender and the carriages is a 'buckeye coupling'. Not available in 1885. It's seen before they hijack it, so it can't be an invention by Doc. (01:32:01)

Correction: While the Central Pacific might not have been using that coupler at the time, the 'buckeye coupling' was in fact available in 1885. It was originally patented in 1873 by Eli Hamilton Janney. It was not commonly used until the late 1880's and early 1890's. In 1893, the Safety Appliance Act was passed, mandating all major railroads to convert to this coupler.

Corrected entry: Doc is always banging on about making as little impact as possible in his new life as an inhabitant of 1885, yet the method of exit he chooses will change hundreds of lives and cause huge disruptions to all sorts of timelines. The train they destroy would not have been easy to replace, and would have been used by hundreds, maybe thousands of travelers to get to places they are now not going to get to, to meet people they are now not going to meet, to start family lines that now don't exist, and so on on so on. Now that Buford is no longer a threat, a far better alternative would be for Marty and Doc to leave town and live quiet, anonymous lives somewhere isolated - something Doc has already thought of and a far better idea than their returning to the future in such a damaging manner.

Correction: This is the final step in Doc's character development throughout the series. Initially, he is very concerned about the effects of altering the past, but he begins to ease up on these beliefs as the series progresses [hence his speech to Jennifer about her future not being written yet]. He has come to understand that the future will write itself and that any minor meddling by himself and Marty will not have the disastrous results he initially believed. This is why he wasn't concerned about building ANOTHER time machine in the 1800s.

Factual error: When Marty goes to meet Mad Dog Tannen for the duel, in the background on the right side is the current flag of California. But that flag did not become the state flag of California until 1911, so would not have been around in 1885.

More mistakes in Back to the Future Part III

Doc: Marty, the idea that I could fall in love at first sight! It's romantic nonsense. There's no scientific rationale for it.
Marty: Come on, Doc. It's not science. You meet the right girl it just hits you. It's like lightning.
Doc: Marty, please don't say that.

More quotes from Back to the Future Part III

Trivia: The band playing at the Hill Valley festival is rock band ZZ Top (two guys with long white beards playing guitar, and a drummer), who wrote songs for the film.

More trivia for Back to the Future Part III

Question: When the 1985 Doc is suddenly transported back to 1885 at the end of BTTF 2 and Marty discovers that he has been murdered, because there is a Doc in 1955 that has already been born after the 1985 Doc has died in the West, why did he go to the trouble of going all the way back to 1885 when Doc was still alive? Is there any actual legitimate time travel reason for this, or did he just do it out of instinct to help his close friend?


Chosen answer: According to the letter, Doc plans to live out his life in 1885. But as it turns out, Doc gets murdered a week after sending the letter. Knowing that Doc's plan to live out his life don't come to fruition, and because he's a good friend, Marty travels to 1885 to save him.

JC Fernandez

Answer: Technically when Doc got transported to 1885, he should not have existed in 1955 because he died. This is the problem I'm having with part 3. The movie should not have happened this way. It should have been where doc did not exist nor the time machine. Part 3 should've never happened.

That's not how most time travel (if any) stories work. Just because someone dies in the past doesn't prevent them from being born since they were already born and alive before going to the past. Think of it this way, if instead of 1885 he travelled to 2085 and died, would that prevent him from being born? The only reason Marty was in danger of disappearing and not existing (i.e. being born) was because his parents were in danger of never getting together.


It was the 1985 Doc that went back to 1885 so he would still be alive in 1955.

The Doc that got sent to 1885 was the Doc from 1985 so therefore it wouldn't have affected 1955 Doc at all.

The one in 1955 hasn't done anything 1985 Doc did.

More questions & answers from Back to the Future Part III

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