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SYFY WIRE Back to the Future

Michael J. Fox Has Some Extremely Valid Thoughts on Back to the Future’s Oedipal Undertones

"I don't know what it is. But when I kiss you, it's like I'm brother." 

By Josh Weiss
Michael J Fox Back To The Future

Remember when Marty McFly nearly shtupped his 17-year-old mother? Pepperidge Farm remembers and so does Michael J. Fox. Catching up with Variety to discuss the new documentary about his life and career — Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie  — the actor touched on the strange and enduring Oedipal undertones of Universal's seminal sci-fi flick Back to the Future.

"There’s something about it that people still respond to because it’s so weird," he said. "Not to be crude, but it’s a movie about almost f—ing your mom and she’s totally ready for it. Even at the time, I realized it was bizarre — plus Lea was pretty cute."

RELATED: Michael J. Fox: It wasn't until ‘Back to the Future Part III’ that he and Christopher Lloyd finally connected

Luckily, the incest is quickly nipped in the bud before it can get hot and steamy when Lorraine (Lea Thompson) comes to the troubling realization that kissing Marty (going under the pseudonym of "Calvin Klein") feels profoundly wrong for reasons she can't quite explain.

"I don't know what it is," she says, arousal completely washed away by cosmic confusion. "But when I kiss you, it's like I'm brother." Thompson addressed the famous scene while speaking to Under the Radar Magazine in 2015, explaining that her character's instant reaction of disgust was integral to the success of the movie's third act.

"I remember how important it was, because you had to completely change — it was such an important plot point, and the audience had to believe in that change, and that I could immediately fall in love with Crispin [Glover]. It’s rare that you have an incredibly short and small moment to make a giant change in the plot of a movie. That moment, and the moment that I think I’m proudest of: when I fall in love with Crispin when he gives me his hand, and I stand up. Those were really, really scary moments for the director, because the audience had to believe it and only the acting could do that for him. There were no special effects. Only the acting could convince the audience of that huge plot shift. So, I was proud of that. I’m really proud that I could pull that off."

The complete Back to the Future trilogy is available to purchase in several iterations from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. A stage play inspired by the 1985 classic opens on Broadway this summer. Click here for more info on performances and tickets.

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