Time Travel Movies & TV Episodes Worth Watching In Honor Of 'Back To The Future Day'

Today is Back to the Future Day, a.k.a. Oct. 21, 2015, the very date Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) and Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) traveled to in Back to the Future Part II. What seemed like the distant future back in 1989 when the movie was released is now the present. And while we may not have flying cars or hoverboards, as predicted in the movie, we do have a whole slew of time travel movies and TV shows to blow our minds.

Now, we know you've seen the Back to the Future trilogy a hundred times over, so here are some other time travel movies and shows to watch in honor of Oct. 21:

Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)
 

While the Back to the Future trilogy may be the film world's most defining time travel experience, The Terminator series comes pretty close. The best of this series is Terminator 2: Judgment Day, directed by James Cameron, which features an identical cyborg (Arnold Schwarzenegger) from the first film attempting to save Sarah Connor's (Linda Hamilton) son. T2 is available for digital rental and purchase on iTunes.

Looper (2012)
 

Written and directed by Rian Johnson (Brick), Looper is one of the rare modern movies to get inventive with the idea of time travel. The film takes place in 2074 and centers on Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a hitman who kills future victims sent from further along in the future of the mob. When his older self (Bruce Willis) is sent back to be killed (known as "closing the loop") and then escapes everything is turned on its head. Looper is available for rental or purchase on iTunes.

Primer (2004)
 

A prime example of the unending complications of time travel, Primer centers on a group of friends who realize they have created the phenomenon. Written and directed by Shane Carruth, the movie includes alternate timelines, double crossings, and so much more. Many people claim they can follow along with the film's plot, but few actually do, so good luck keeping up with this majorly confusing 2004 thriller. You can watch Primer on Netflix now.

Timecop (1994)
 

Jean-Claude Van Damme stars as a federal law enforcement agent policing criminals using time travel in Timecop. He's sent back to 1929 to arrest his former partner for going back in time and taking advantage of the stock market, which eventually leads to a complicated web of conspiracy and different timelines. Ron Silver co-stars as the villainous politician Sen. Aaron McComb in one of his best roles. Time Cop is available for rental or purchase on Amazon.

Rick and Morty - "A Rickle in Time" (2015)
 

Hit animated series Rick and Morty is a clear nod to Back to the Future's main characters, Doc Brown and Marty, so any storyline that utilizes time travel HAS to be mentioned. The season two premiere features a complex use of time travel that sees time splitting between several realities. Check out the insane episode on Adult Swim.

Star Trek: The Original Series - "The City on the Edge of Forever" (1967)
 

Dr. McCoy (DeForest Kelley) goes temporarily insane in this beloved Star Trek episode written by noted speculative fiction author Harlan Ellison. McCoy beams down to a planet sending out shockwaves where he then jumps into an arch that takes him back to the 1930s during the Great Depression. The crew discovers that the entire course of history has changed and must make things right again. You can watch the episode on Hulu.

The Twilight Zone - "Walking Distance" (1959)
 

The Twilight Zone featured many time travel episodes over the course of its run, but none were more emotional than Walking Distance. The episode, written by series creator Rod Serling, features a man (Gig Young) taking a walk back to his hometown only to discover it is stuck in his childhood. He sees his younger self and urges him to enjoy life while he can, and even more twists are born from there. You can watch the episode on Netflix.

Donnie Darko (2001)
 

Donnie Darko is a dark, trippy experience that benefits from multiple viewings. After the titular Donnie (played by Jake Gyllenhaal) is told by a demonic-looking rabbit that the world will end in 28 days, he discovers a plane has crashed through his house and into his bedroom. From there the '80s teen becomes even more troubled as he learns about time travel and various universes. The film is available for rental or purchase on iTunes.

X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)
 

One of the more significant examples of superhero time travel movies done right is X-Men: Days of Future Past. Much like Back to the Future and Terminator, this film centers on Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) being sent into the past to correct a future catastrophe, in this case the rise of the evil Sentinels (or, depending on who you talk to, Brett Ratner's try at making an X-Men film). It's available to rent or purcahse on iTunes.

Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
 

Edge of Tomorrow was one of the most underrated movies of 2014, especially for its brilliant use of time travel. Tom Cruise stars as a soldier fighting an alien invasion who suddenly has the ability to repeat the same day over and over (after he dies). It's a bit like Groundhog Day, but with mech suits and aliens. Emily Blunt co-stars a Special Forces warrior helping him put an end to the war. Rent it or purchase it on iTunes.

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