344 user 132 critic

Back to the Future Part III (1990)

1:06 | Trailer
Stranded in 1955, Marty McFly learns about the death of Doc Brown in 1885 and must travel back in time to save him. With no fuel readily available for the DeLorean, the two must figure how to escape the Old West before Emmett is murdered.


Robert Zemeckis


Robert Zemeckis (characters), Bob Gale (characters) | 3 more credits »
1,345 ( 338)
5 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael J. Fox ... Marty McFly / Seamus McFly
Christopher Lloyd ... Dr. Emmett Brown
Mary Steenburgen ... Clara Clayton
Thomas F. Wilson ... Buford 'Mad Dog' Tannen / Biff Tannen
Lea Thompson ... Maggie McFly / Lorraine McFly
Elisabeth Shue ... Jennifer Parker
Matt Clark ... Chester the Bartender
Richard Dysart ... Barbwire Salesman
Pat Buttram ... Jeb, Saloon Old-Timer #3
Harry Carey Jr. ... Zeke, Saloon Old-Timer #2
Dub Taylor ... Levi, Saloon Old-Timer #1
James Tolkan ... Marshal James Strickland
Marc McClure ... Dave McFly
Wendie Jo Sperber ... Linda McFly
Jeffrey Weissman ... George McFly


Stranded in 1955, Marty McFly receives written word from his friend, Doctor Emmett Brown, as to where can be found the DeLorean time machine. However, an unfortunate discovery prompts Marty to go to his friend's aid. Using the time machine, Marty travels to the old west where his friend has run afoul of a gang of thugs and has fallen in love with a local schoolteacher. Using the technology from the time, Marty and Emmett devise one last chance to send the two of them back to the future. Written by Vampire Sharpshooter

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


They've saved the best trip for last... But this time they may have gone too far.


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Robert Zemeckis: [citation] When Marty walks along the railroad tracks and finally reaches the town, he comes to the railway station. Then he walks into the town, while the camera slowly rises up above the station and finally shows Marty at a long distance walking into the town. This scene is shot exactly the same way as the scene in Once Upon a Time in the West (1968), when Jill arrives at the station. See more »


The bulk of the film takes place in 1885. All of the windmills seen in the film are Aermotor self-oiling models. The Aermotor company wasn't formed until 1888, and the self-oiling model wasn't developed until 1915. See more »


[first lines]
Marty McFly: Doc! Doc! Doc!
Young Doc: [not paying attention] What?
Marty McFly: Doc!
Young Doc: What?
Marty McFly: Doc!
Young Doc: [finally seeing him] Aaaah!
Marty McFly: Okay, relax, Doc, it's me! It's me, It's Marty!
Young Doc: No, it can't be! I just sent you back to the future!
Marty McFly: Oh, I know you did send me back to the future. But I'm back, I'm back *from* the future.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with all four versions of the Universal Pictures company bumper. See more »

Alternate Versions

The original 2002 DVDs for parts II and III had major framing errors when the wrong areas of the open-matte frame were transferred (known as the "framing fiasco"). This is noticeable for several minutes in each movie and usually manifests as too much sky and missing objects at the bottom. Universal had replacements ready by 2003. A sample from part III is the fuel injection manifold exploding out of the car, which is supposed to be visible. Copies with a "V2" next to the copyright notice on the disc (on replacements only; in trilogy sets a "V2" is on the II disc), the 2009 single-disc reprint, and the 25th anniversary sets are OK. See more »


Referenced in One Hundred and One Nights (1995) See more »


Doubleback (Acoustic Instrumental Version)
Written by Billy Gibbons, Dusty Hill, and Frank Beard
Performed by ZZ Top
See more »

User Reviews

No one's future is written for them
14 January 2016 | by oOoBarracudaSee all my reviews

Sitting back to watch the final, for now, entry in the Back to the Future trilogy, I was a little disheartened. I had a lot of fun with this series, and was sad not to be traveling through the dimensions of time with Marty and Doc Brown for the last time. But alas, all good things must come to an end, and of course, I can always rent the DVD, or perhaps even add any of them to my own collection. Back to the Future Part III, didn't simply "phone it in" for its' final act, it provided a complete compilation to its time travel exploits.

This story picks up where the second left off; with Marty (Michael J. Fox) acting on a letter he received from Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd). At the conclusion of Back to the Future Part II, the DeLorean is struck by lightning, with Doc inside, and he is transported all the way back to 1885, in the old west. Since Doc had always dreamed of living in the Wild West, he was not severely disappointed to be stuck in the 1800's, and he certainly was stuck because it would be 70 or so years before the replacement parts he needed to repair the DeLorean would exist. He writes Marty a letter explaining to him what he is up to and that he is fine and should be left in 1885. Soon after receiving the letter, however, Marty uncovers that Doc Brown is about to die. Unwilling to leave him to that fate, Marty ignores all risks, intent on traveling to 1885, to find Doc Brown. This would prove impossible without a trip back to 1955, to get some help from the Doc Brown of the past. Marty's crash landing in 1885 creates quite a conundrum, however, as a fuel line breaks causing all of the gas to leak out of the DeLorean. Doc reminds him that gas hasn't been invented yet, and they will have to be innovative to find a way to power the DeLorean to the necessary 88 M.P.H. needed to travel through time. After devising a plan to power the DeLorean by locomotive power, a new distraction, of a feminine nature arrives. A Ms. Clara Clayton greets Doc Brown, and he is instantly smitten by her. Doc even vows to stay in the past with Clara after helping Marty fix the DeLorean. Our Heroes situation is made even more difficult because Marty, in typical McFly fashion refuses to be called "chicken", or "yellow" in 1885 terms. After an altercation with Buford "Mad Dog" Tannen (Thomas F. Wilson), Marty gains the attention of the gun that he discovered was to kill Doc. In the final installment of Robert Zemeckis beloved time traveling adventure, out duo is outrunning a gun, deciding between love and fate, and learning that the words of others should only ever be words rather than a reflection of ourselves; a pleasing finale to the Back to the Future series.

Once again, the brilliant on-screen chemistry of Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd bring Back to the Future Part III to life. Years working together on the same franchise were nothing to dilute the pair's on-screen chemistry. Still as engaging as ever, it was pure joy to watch Marty and Doc on screen again, one last time. This film also kept the heart in to the movie. Each entry in this trilogy has heart at the center, no pun intended. It was endearing to see our zany Doc Brown fall in love, even if he did wish to pick his new love over traveling with Marty.

I would recommend Back to the Future Part III to almost anyone. Rated PG, it is appropriate and engaging for all ages. Fans of the trilogy have to see it, as it wraps up all of our favorite's story lines. Anyone who believes in the power of love, time, and destiny will feel empowered by the message. I'm not sure what type of viewer Couldn't find something to appreciate about Back to the Future Part III, and to me, that's exactly how a franchise should end; pleasing the one time viewer and the series fanatic alike.

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Release Date:

25 May 1990 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Three See more »


Box Office


$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$19,089,645, 27 May 1990

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby SR (35 mm prints)| Dolby Digital | Dolby Atmos



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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