7 Weirdly Accurate Predictions of 2015 in Back to the Future II

October 21, 2015 | Kelly Tatera

Marty McFly and a hoverboard in Back to the Future II
Photo credit: Ricardo 清介 八木/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Maybe the filmmakers already have time travel figured out?

It’s October 21st, 2015 — the day Marty McFly and Doc Brown time travel to the futuristic land of Hill Valley. Perhaps in some parallel universe the two are sailing through space time at this very moment, but in this reality, today is “Back to the Future” day.

The movie Back to the Future II was released in 1989, those ancient times before everyone had smartphones and gadgets. While the movie didn’t predict that Apple would be on its way to world domination by 2015, its vision of the future did contain some strikingly accurate predictions.

SEE ALSO: Lexus Brings the Futuristic Hoverboard to Reality

2015 in Hill Valley featured bullies zooming around on hoverboards, flying cars, 3D movies, and in the movie, the Cubs won the 2015 World Series MLB championship. In the real 2015, it’s not looking too great for the Chicago Cubs at this point (sorry, Cubbie fans), but many of the other futuristic features of Hill Valley actually did make their way to existence today:


1.  Hoverboards

While we’re not yet at the point where cities and towns are flooded with hoverboard-riding teens, Lexus has made the hoverboard a reality. The crafty board levitates courtesy of its superconductors which store a magnetic field at temperatures well below freezing. The design will need improvement before everyday folk can ride around and maintain their balance — plus it only works in a special skatepark in Spain which has 200 meters of magnetic strack laid beneath the park. But it’s still pretty impressive that a movie in the late 80s predicted that a hoverboard would become a reality this very year.

2.  Video Chat

We’ve actually surpassed Back to the Future’s prediction about video chat in 2015. In the movie, the video chat takes place on a big TV. Not only are Skype and FaceTime used to communicate on the regular, but we can video chat in virtually any place with our nifty smartphones and tablets.

3.  News Drones

It’s safe to say drones exist today. In the movie, a USA Today drone is seen flying around capturing footage at the Hill Valley courthouse. Today, drones are used for a number of things like aerial photography, surveillance, and soon even commercial deliveries like groceries and beer. Major media companies are also looking into employing news drones, according to CNN.

4.  3D Movies

Marty McFly almost gets chomped down by a massive holographic shark in Jaws 19. Pretty accurate, other than the fact we haven’t made it to the 19th Jaws movie. In fact, we even take the 3D movie experience beyond holographic immersion — for instance, in Disney’s 3D Honey, I Shrunk the Audience, viewers get sprinkled with water to simulate getting sneezed on by a dog.

5.  Wearable Eye Technology

It’s like the filmmakers knew technology would lead to Google Glass and virtual reality headsets like Oculus Rift. The video glasses that Marty McFly wears in the movie even look similar to some of the virtual reality gadgets we have today. But the movie didn’t predict that, by 2015, Google would be on its way to shrinking that technology down to the size of a contact lens. To be fair, Google’s innovative spirit always seems to be a step ahead of everyone else’s.

6.  Fingerprint Scanning

Fingerprint scans are a popular way of identity authentication and security insurance today. Even our smartphones have finger scanning features to unlock our phones or access banking apps.

7.  Florida Baseball Teams

In the movie, the Chicago Cubs won the World Series against a Miami baseball team. Whether or not that game is ever played, the very existence of a Miami baseball team was a spot-on prediction. The Florida Marlins (who eventually changed their name to the Miami Marlins in 2012) weren’t founded until 1993, 4 years after the movie was released.

While we don’t have flying cars in 2015, it doesn’t seem like an impossibility with the existing technologies and engineering expertise. Nonetheless, the predictions of a futuristic 2015 were strangely on point in Back to the Future II — perhaps the filmmakers know a little more about time travel than they’ve let on…

Hot Topics

Facebook comments