Follow TV Tropes


Funny / Back to the Future Part III

Go To
Side effects of wake-up juice: SCREAMING BLOODY MURDER!!!note 

The Film

  • Granted, it's recycled from Part II, but 1955 Doc's reaction to Marty coming back to his time from the future. The entire thing.
  • 1955 Doc's reaction to finding Marty in his house after thinking he imagined him coming back from the future is priceless. He screams hysterically, causing Marty to scream too, then trips over the hoverboard and backs into his organ's keyboard which carries on wailing dramatically in increasing key as 1955 Doc frantically inches backwards on the organ while Marty tries to explain what happened. Doc then retreats into the bathroom, the very same bathroom where he banged his head while hanging the clock, and throws a hilarious Hair Flip just as he slams the door on Marty.
    • This then leads into Marty repeating the flux capacitor scene as he fills him in on the events of the previous film. However, 1955 Doc is a bit more skeptical this go around:
      1955 Doc: [hysterical] This can't be happening! You can't be here! [goes into the bathroom] It doesn't make sense for you to be here! I even refuse to believe you are here! [slams the door]
      Marty: [to the door; talking fast] Doc, I am here, and it does make sense! I came back to 1955 again with you, the you from 1985, because we had to get a book from Biff! So once I got the book, you—that is, the you from 1985—were in the DeLorean and it got struck by lightning, and you got sent back to 1885!
      1955 Doc: 1885?! [opens the door; gets in Marty's face] It's a very interesting story, Future Boy... but there's one thing that doesn't make sense. If the me of the future is now in the past, how could you possibly know about it?
      Marty: You sent me a letter. [holds it up to 1955 Doc's face]
      [1955 Doc arches an eyebrow at the letter]
  • 1955 Doc reading the letter from his future self.
    1955 Doc: "Please take care of Einstein for me." Einstein?
    Marty: It's your dog, Doc. Einstein, that's what you call your dog in 1985.
    1955 Doc: Oh! Right.
  • A funny bit highlighting the global changes between 1955 and 1985:
    Marty: "As you see, the lightning bolt shorted out the time circuit control chip. The attached..."
    1955 Doc: Schematic.
    Marty: "...schematic diagram will allow you to build a replacement unit with 1955 components, thus restoring the time machine to perfect working order."
    1955 Doc: Unbelievable that this little piece of junk could be such a big problem. [looks closely at the chip] No wonder this circuit failed. It says, "Made in Japan."
    Marty: What do you mean, Doc? All the best stuff is made in Japan.
    1955 Doc: [whispering] ...Unbelievable!
  • 1955 Doc and Marty discovering 1885 Doc's tombstone has two darkly comical moments:
    Marty: [reading] "Erected in eternal memory by his beloved Clara." [turns his flashlight on 1955 Doc] Who the hell is Clara?
    1955 Doc: Marty, please don't stand there!
    Marty: [discovers he's standing directly over the grave and moves off of it] Oh, sorry! Gotta take another picture. [takes the picture]
    1955 Doc: [reading] "Shot in the back by Buford Tannen over a matter of eighty dollars"!? [to Marty] What kind of a future do you call that?!
    • Later, when 1885 Doc sees the picture.
      Doc: "Shot in the back by Buford Tannen over a matter of eighty dollars"!? September 7th? That's this Monday! Now I wish I'd paid him off!
  • When Marty and 1955 Doc are reading a biography on Buford Tannen, it is claimed that Buford shot 12 men, not including Indians and Chinamen. 1955 Doc asks if 1885 Doc is among the 12:
    Marty: [reading from the book] "However, this claim cannot be proven since precise records were not kept after Tannen shot a newspaper editor who printed an unfavorable story about him in 1884."
  • The fact that 1955 Doc tells Marty that the cardboard Indians at the drive-in won't be there in 1885 when he drives the DeLorean towards the movie screen... except they are, and they're REAL.
    Marty: INDIANS!!! [puts the DeLorean in reverse]
    • Marty's inner thoughts from the novel while trying to get away from them.
      Novel: What would the Pohatchee do if they caught him? Marty wished he had paid more attention in those Hill Valley history classes. As he recalled, there wasn't much love lost between the Pohatchees and the local settlers, especially during the 1880s. The Indians would probably just shoot him a few times to make sure he was dead, leaving his body riddled with arrows and bullet holes. He didn't think the Pohatchee were the scalping sort. Actually, didn't he remember something from his history course about Indians learning that particular custom from the white settlers, who had scalped Indians in the first place? Well, all Marty could hope was that the Pohatchee didn't want to return the favor.
  • Marty running away from the bear is pure slapstick, capped off with him falling down a hill and crashing through the fence of the McFly Farm.
  • The third instance of Marty waking up in what he thinks is his bed, only it's not.
    Marty: Mom? Mom, is that you?
    Maggie: There, there. You've been asleep for nearly six hours now.
    Marty: I had this horrible nightmare. I dreamed I was in a Western. I was being chased by all these Indians... and a bear.
    Maggie: You're safe and sound now here at the McFly Farm.
    Marty: [wide awake] "McFly Farm"? Aaah! [sits up in bed] You're my... you're my... who are you?
  • When Marty agrees to some water with dinner with his great-great-grandparents, he's grossed out by how dirty and cloudy the water is. It's especially funny since it's contrasted how good the food looks, since it's all organic vegetables and wild game. Unfortunately, there's no water filters in 1885, so it's straight from a natural well.
  • Marty holding baby Will: "So you're my great grandfather. The first McFly born in America... and you peed on me."
  • The entire expanded scene in the novel with Marty having to pee at the McFly farmhouse, first using the wrong terminology ("using the bathroom" versus "relieving himself"), then assuming the toilet is inside the house (it's actually an outhouse), then realizing how foul it would smell in the days before modern plumbing.
  • The movie's weird obsession with Seamus' hat. He even plans to trade Marty's gun for a new one!
  • The old-timers' reaction to seeing Marty in his goofy pink "Western" outfit:
    Old-Timer #1: Take a look and see what just breezed in the door.
    Old-Timer #2: Well, I didn't know the circus was in town!
    Old-Timer #3: Musta gotten that shirt off'n a dead Chinee.
  • It's easy to miss, but upon his first visit to the saloon, Marty earns a few laughs for trying to order water with ice. Not an hour after reuniting with Doc, he finds that his friend has invented a ridiculously large and complex device that the two men must operate at once to produce exactly that: A cube of solid ice. Doc enjoys an iced tea while Marty realizes the thing is a refrigerator. Keep in mind that to get ice when it wasn't winter back then, stores and facilities had to order massive blocks of ice from colder climates, which were covered in sawdust to keep them from melting too fast to be of use. As clunky and impractical as it is, Doc's refrigerator is basically the only way to artificially get ice in 1885.
  • When Marty identifies Buford Tannen as "Mad Dog" Tannen, everybody in the saloon either runs away or hides under the tables.
    • Then Buford makes Marty "dance" (read: force him to constantly dodge bullets getting shot at his feet), and Marty ends it with a moonwalk. You can even hear him singing "Billie Jean" under his breath. One of the old timers even lets out a bemused "Shit...". Buford's "WTF?" look really sells it. And then the spittoon goes flying.
  • Buford and Doc's meeting:
    Buford: You owe me money, blacksmith.
    Doc: How do ya figure?
    Buford: My horse threw a shoe. Seein' as you was the one that done the shoeing, I say that makes you responsible.
    Doc: Well, since you never paid me for the job, I'd say that makes us even.
    Buford: Wrong! See, I was on my horse when it threw the shoe, and I got throwed off! And that caused me to bust a perfectly good bottle of fine Kentucky Redeye. So the way I figure it, blacksmith, you owe me five dollars for the whiskey, and seventy-five dollars for the horse!
    Marty: [weakly] That's the eighty dollars...!
    Doc: Look, if your horse threw a shoe, bring him back and I'll re-shoe him.
    • After that, when Buford's gang rides away and Marty and Doc have their reunion, Doc says Marty is liable to get shot in his garish clothes and asks "What idiot dressed you like that?" Marty just claps Doc on the shoulder and says "You did."
  • Doc's implausible ideas on how to get the DeLorean up to 88 MPH in the 1880s:
    Doc: Wait! I've got it! We can roll it down a steep hill! No, we'll never find a smooth enough surface. Unless... Of course! Ice! We'll wait until winter, when the lake freezes over—
    Marty: Winter?! What are you saying? Monday! It's three days away!
  • Continuing the Running Gag of Marty using 1985 slang:
    Marty: Hey, Frisbee! Far out! [walks away]
    Seamus: What was the meaning o' that?
    Maggie: It was right in front of him!
    • Later, to Buford after Marty foils his attempt to shoot Doc:
      Marty: [pissed] Hey, lighten up, jerk!
      [Beat during which a confused Buford looks at his mooks to try to figure out what Marty just said—they all just shrug]
      Buford: [still confused but trying not to show it] Mighty strong words, runt!
  • Buford being so pissed off after his confrontation with Marty at the Town Festival that he sounds like he's about ready to cry.
    Buford: Let's go, boys! Let these sissies have their party! *pouts*
    • When he originally planned the duel.
      Buford: Let's finish this right now!
      Mook 1: Uh, not now, Marshall's got our guns.
      Buford: Like I said, we'll finish this tomorrow!
      Mook 2: Tomorrow, we're robbing the Pine City Stage...
      Buford: [turning to his mooks, in an exasperated sotto voce] What about Monday? Are we doing anything Monday?
      Mook 1: No, Monday'll be fine, you can kill him on Monday.
      Buford: I'll be back this way on Monday!
  • The scene where Marty wakes up alone in Doc's lab/smithy (with the heavy implication that Doc spent the night with Clara) and realizes that he's alone and has a few minutes to kill. He puts on his cowboy hat and gun holster; stands in front of a mirror, and totes his gun, quoting Robert De Niro and Clint Eastwood. ("You talkin' to me?" and "Go ahead. Make my day.") All while wearing his silly 1885 one-piece pajamas with a Wardrobe Malfunction.
  • Doc spilling the truth about the future after breaking up with Clara. Of course, he's been hitting up the sauce to drown his sorrows, and his delivery of the truth is completely deadpan and depressing. It sounds exactly like the ramblings of a miserable drunk.
    Doc: And in the future, we don't need horses. We have motorized carriages called automobiles.
    Old-Timer: If everybody's got one of these auto-whatsits, don't anybody walk or run anymore?
    Doc: Of course we run, but for recreation. For fun.
    Old-Timer: Run for fun? What the hell kind of fun is that?!
    • And what makes this funnier? The bartender states that Doc hasn't had any of the whiskey he's holding. Doc is drunk on fumes.
      Bartender: [amused] He just likes to hold it!
    • Earlier, Doc talks about sending rockets to the moon with Clara. When Clara finishes his sentence, Doc's look is priceless.
  • Doc passing out after drinking whiskey.
    Marty: How many did he have?
    Bartender: Just the one.
    Marty: Just the one? Come on, Doc!
    Bartender: Now there's a fella who can't hold his liquor.
    • And then Doc's subsequent reaction to the "wake-up juice." He didn't actually wake up at that point; it was a reflex reaction, according to the bartender.
  • "Everybody, everywhere, will say that Clint Eastwood is the biggest yellow-belly in the West!"
  • When Marty tries to forfeit his showdown with Buford.
    Buford: Wha? Forfeit?! [turns to his lackey] What's that mean?
    Mook: Uh... It means you win without a fight!
    Buford: Without shootin'?! He can't do that! [turns back to Marty] Hey, you can't do that!!
    • A bit later, while he's giving Marty the count of ten to come out of the saloon.
      [Buford pauses, then looks at one of his mooks, who holds up seven fingers]
      Buford: Seven!
  • Marty and Doc exchanging Catchphrases.
    Marty: Great Scott!
    Doc: I know, this is heavy.
    • What really sells it is when one remembers how utterly baffled 1955 Doc was at Marty's catchphrase in the first film.
  • The climatic showdown between Marty and Buford is both hilarious and awesome. Marty decides not to use a gun against Buford and drops it on the ground, but when he IS shot, it turns out that he's wearing a stove door under his poncho (a Shout-Out to A Fistful of Dollars note ), as Buford finds out the hard way when he tries to punch Marty in the stomach. Marty then takes it off and gives him a good whack in the face with it. When that is also dropped on the ground, Marty still beats the ever-loving shit out of Buford who then fittingly collapses into a manure cart after crashing into a tombstone (and not just any tombstone, but the blank that was going to be either Doc's or Marty's) from Marty's punch and making him dizzy.
    Buford: [after spitting out manure] I hate manure...
  • Doc hand-waving away the moral complications to train theft:
    Doc: We're going to hija—borrow the locomotive...
    • Also a brief Heroic BSoD when Doc momentarily remembers how he unintentionally changed history:
      Doc: We'll drive the train towards Clayton... Shonash Ravine.
    • Marty asks what's going to happen to the locomotive once the DeLorean is gone. Without breaking stride at all and continuing in his usual hammy glory, Doc replies:
      Doc: It'll be a spectacular wreck. Too bad no one will be around to see it.
    • And in the end, after Marty gets back to 1985, we see the ravine is now called "Eastwood Ravine". This borders on Black Comedy, because as far as the 1885 residents of Hill Valley knew, "Clint Eastwood" was killed in a horrific train wreck (the same morning that he got Buford Tannen arrested, too!), and the ravine was thus renamed in his honor.
    • One wonders what the reaction would be if the real Clint Eastwood ever found out about this random small town ravine, and that apparently, some guy with his name died there in 1885.
  • When Clara asks the barbed wire salesman if Doc was the man suffering heartbreak at the saloon, she manages to blurt out a rather flattering description of him (could also belong under Heartwarming Moments).
    Clara: Excuse me, but was this man tall, with great big brown Puppy-Dog Eyes and long silvery flowing hair?
    Barbed Wire Salesman: You know him!
  • When Marty and Doc hijack the train, the engineer asks if this is a hold-up. Marty and Doc look at each other, both stumped as to how to answer. After a moment, Doc says "It's a science experiment!" You don't see too many scientists running around with guns, do you?
  • When Doc is about to jump onto the DeLorean from the train and Clara is trying to get his attention. Remember, Doc and Marty have no idea that she had climbed into the locomotive. When Clara blows the locomotive's whistle, the look on Marty and Doc's faces, after hearing a whistle being blown from what they thought was an empty locomotive, is priceless.
  • Clara is making her way across the train when a sudden burst of acceleration (from the yellow log igniting) throws her back into the pile of wood she's been climbing. The best way she can find to express her surprise and frustration is "Golly!"
    • On the topic of the logs, it's minor in the midst of the intensity of the scene, but after the third log goes off and the train starts gunning down the tracks, the DeLorean is briefly pushed hard enough to tip upwards, accompanied by a brief shot of Marty screaming in shock.


  • Seamus McFly brings home a plush Roger Rabbit for supper.
    • Becomes funnier when you consider that Christopher Lloyd was in both movies, playing wildly different characters.
      • Even MORE hilarious, Charles Fleischer, the voice of Roger Rabbit, is in Part II as Terry.
  • Doc's goodbye to Clara gets interrupted by the horse farting, which Christopher Lloyd acknowledges without breaking character.
    Doc: [completely serious] I've come to say goodbye. We both have.
  • The old timers offer a different commentary on Marty's "western" garb.
    Old Timer #1: My son come home from once back east in them fancy-ass duds like that.
    Old Timer #2: What did you do to him?
    Old Timer #1: Shit, I forgot.
  • Thomas F. Wilson based his portrayal of Buford Tannen on Lee Marvin in The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, but in one outtake, he inadvertently channels another western star.
    Tom: What's your name, pilgrim? [breaks character] "Pilgrim?" What am I, John Wayne?
  • Another outtake features Doc and Marty talking about the plan to get back to 1985 next to the unfinished bridge. As they start to head back, Christopher Lloyd accidentally sandwiches Michael J. Fox between the two horses.
    Michael: Yo, Doc. You're squishing the shit out of me!
  • Michael J. Fox Faking the Dead as Marty after being shot by Buford. As the camera moves closer to Fox lying on the ground, a fly seems to think he's really dead and lands on his lips. Cue him blowing it away, then cracking up laughing.
  • Tom Wilson going from hopping on one foot in pain to doing an impromptu dance.