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17th Jan 2021

This hidden Back to the Future ‘mistake’ has a subtly brilliant explanation

A hidden 'mistake' made in Back To The Future has surfaced online, some 36 years since the film was released. How didn't we spot it?

Alex Roberts

How did we not notice this?

A hidden ‘mistake’ made in Back To The Future (1985) has surfaced, some 36 years after the film was released.

Remember the mall Marty McFly skateboards into when he first meets the doc, Emmett Brown? You should have probably been paying attention to it, according to a short clip posted on TikTok by the user @hiddenmovedetails.

The sign outside the mall holds the key to a hidden movie detail that has eluded film fanatics for years.

In the TikTok clip, the scene is set.

“When Marty is first meeting up with the doc to see the DeLorean, he’s meeting up at Twin Pines Mall.

“But later in the movie, when Marty is coming back from the past, we can see that the mall has changed to Lone Pine Mall.”

Seems like a mistake, right? You’d be forgiven for thinking this was just another continuity error picked up by eagle-eyed viewers, years after the movie’s release.

But you’d mistaken, in this case. The name change is an intentional detail, hidden away in the film.

“That’s not a mistake,” continues the TikTok user.

“When Marty first went back to the past, he ran over one of these pine trees – which is where the mall would have eventually been built. So, Marty ran over the pine tree, which turned it into Lone Pine Mall when it was originally Twin Pines Mall.”

You learn something new every day.