The 20 best science fiction movies in no order

by Taylorfirst1 | created - 11 Sep 2012 | updated - 12 Sep 2012 | Public
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1. King Kong (1933)

Not Rated | 100 min | Adventure, Horror, Sci-Fi

7.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A film crew goes to a tropical island for an exotic location shoot and discovers a colossal ape who takes a shine to their female blonde star. He is then captured and brought back to New York City for public exhibition.

Directors: Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack | Stars: Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong, Bruce Cabot, Frank Reicher

Votes: 69,354 | Gross: $10.00M

2. Forbidden Planet (1956)

G | 98 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A starship crew goes to investigate the silence of a planet's colony only to find two survivors and a deadly secret that one of them has.

Director: Fred M. Wilcox | Stars: Walter Pidgeon, Anne Francis, Leslie Nielsen, Warren Stevens

Votes: 37,802 | Gross: $3.00M

3. Planet of the Apes (1968)

G | 112 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
79 Metascore

An astronaut crew crash-lands on a planet in the distant future where intelligent talking apes are the dominant species, and humans are the oppressed and enslaved.

Director: Franklin J. Schaffner | Stars: Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans

Votes: 147,758 | Gross: $33.40M

4. Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977)

PG | 121 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

8.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  
92 Metascore

Luke Skywalker joins forces with a Jedi Knight, a cocky pilot, a Wookiee and two droids to save the galaxy from the Empire's world-destroying battle-station while also attempting to rescue Princess Leia from the evil Darth Vader.

Director: George Lucas | Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Alec Guinness

Votes: 1,014,406 | Gross: $322.74M

5. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982)

PG | 113 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
71 Metascore

With the assistance of the Enterprise crew, Admiral Kirk must stop an old nemesis, Khan Noonien Singh, from using the life-generating Genesis Device as the ultimate weapon.

Director: Nicholas Meyer | Stars: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, James Doohan

Votes: 98,383 | Gross: $78.91M

6. Alien (1979)

R | 117 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
83 Metascore

After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, John Hurt, Veronica Cartwright

Votes: 642,477 | Gross: $78.90M

7. Aliens (1986)

R | 137 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

8.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
86 Metascore

57 years later, Ellen Ripley is rescued by a deep salvage team during her hypersleep. The moon from the original movie has been colonized, but contact is lost. This time, colonial marines have impressive firepower, but will that be enough?

Director: James Cameron | Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Michael Biehn, Carrie Henn, Paul Reiser

Votes: 546,940 | Gross: $85.16M

8. Them! (1954)

Approved | 94 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The earliest atomic tests in New Mexico cause common ants to mutate into giant man-eating monsters that threaten civilization.

Director: Gordon Douglas | Stars: James Whitmore, Edmund Gwenn, Joan Weldon, James Arness

Votes: 16,392

9. The Thing from Another World (1951)

Approved | 87 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Scientists and American Air Force officials fend off a bloodthirsty alien organism while at a remote arctic outpost.

Directors: Christian Nyby, Howard Hawks | Stars: Kenneth Tobey, Margaret Sheridan, James Arness, Robert Cornthwaite

Votes: 20,909

10. The Thing (1982)

R | 109 min | Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
57 Metascore

A crew in Antarctica finds a neighboring camp destroyed and its crew dead. Whatever killed them is nowhere to be found, unless it's hidden in plain sight.

Director: John Carpenter | Stars: Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David, Richard Masur

Votes: 293,084 | Gross: $13.78M

11. Total Recall (1990)

R | 113 min | Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
57 Metascore

When a man goes for virtual vacation memories of the planet Mars, an unexpected and harrowing series of events forces him to go to the planet for real - or does he?

Director: Paul Verhoeven | Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside, Rachel Ticotin

Votes: 259,787 | Gross: $119.39M

12. Predator (1987)

R | 107 min | Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
42 Metascore

A team of commandos on a mission in a Central American jungle find themselves hunted by an extraterrestrial warrior.

Director: John McTiernan | Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, Kevin Peter Hall, Elpidia Carrillo

Votes: 316,288 | Gross: $59.74M

13. It! The Terror from Beyond Space (1958)

Approved | 69 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

6.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

The first manned expedition to Mars is decimated by an unknown life form which stows away on the rescue ship.

Director: Edward L. Cahn | Stars: Marshall Thompson, Shirley Patterson, Kim Spalding, Ann Doran

Votes: 3,692

14. Independence Day (1996)

PG-13 | 145 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
59 Metascore

The aliens are coming and their goal is to invade and destroy Earth. Fighting superior technology, mankind's best weapon is the will to survive.

Director: Roland Emmerich | Stars: Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, Mary McDonnell

Votes: 465,038 | Gross: $306.17M

15. The War of the Worlds (1953)

Approved | 85 min | Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller

7.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A small town in California is attacked by Martians, beginning a worldwide invasion.

Director: Byron Haskin | Stars: Gene Barry, Ann Robinson, Les Tremayne, Robert Cornthwaite

Votes: 27,446 | Gross: $4.36M

16. The Blob (1958)

Not Rated | 86 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

6.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An alien lifeform consumes everything in its path as it grows and grows.

Directors: Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr., Russell S. Doughten Jr. | Stars: Steve McQueen, Aneta Corsaut, Earl Rowe, Olin Howland

Votes: 18,274

17. Godzilla, King of the Monsters! (1956)

Not Rated | 80 min | Action, Horror, Sci-Fi

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A 400-foot (122-meter) dinosaur-like beast, awoken from undersea hibernation off the Japanese coast by atomic-bomb testing, attacks Tokyo.

Directors: Ishirô Honda, Terry O. Morse | Stars: Raymond Burr, Takashi Shimura, Momoko Kôchi, Akira Takarada

Votes: 5,835

18. The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

Approved | 92 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An alien lands and tells the people of Earth that they must live peacefully or be destroyed as a danger to other planets.

Director: Robert Wise | Stars: Michael Rennie, Patricia Neal, Hugh Marlowe, Sam Jaffe

Votes: 68,428

19. Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

PG | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

8.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
81 Metascore

After the rebels are overpowered by the Empire on their newly established base, Luke Skywalker begins Jedi training with Yoda. His friends accept shelter from a questionable ally as Darth Vader hunts them in a plan to capture Luke.

Director: Irvin Kershner | Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams

Votes: 942,162 | Gross: $290.48M

20. The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953)

Approved | 80 min | Adventure, Horror, Sci-Fi

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A ferocious dinosaur awakened by an Arctic atomic test terrorizes the North Atlantic and, ultimately, New York City.

Director: Eugène Lourié | Stars: Paul Hubschmid, Paula Raymond, Cecil Kellaway, Kenneth Tobey

Votes: 5,426 | Gross: $5.00M