Best Sci-fi movies

by José Pedro Gomes | created - 21 Nov 2010 | updated - 04 Aug 2012 | Public
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1. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

G | 149 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi

82 Metascore

Humanity finds a mysterious, obviously artificial object buried beneath the Lunar surface and, with the intelligent computer H.A.L. 9000, sets off on a quest.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter

Votes: 498,487 | Gross: $56.95M

2. Blade Runner (1982)

R | 117 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller

89 Metascore

A blade runner must pursue and try to terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space and have returned to Earth to find their creator.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos

Votes: 580,358 | Gross: $27.00M

3. Alien (1979)

R | 116 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

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: 663,513 | Gross: $78.90M

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

PG | 121 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

90 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: 1,048,581 | Gross: $322.74M

5. Stalker (1979)

Not Rated | 162 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

A guide leads two men through an area known as the Zone to find a room that grants wishes.

Director: Andrei Tarkovsky | Stars: Alisa Freyndlikh, Aleksandr Kaydanovskiy, Anatoliy Solonitsyn, Nikolay Grinko

Votes: 87,575 | Gross: $0.23M

6. THX 1138 (1971)

R | 86 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

75 Metascore

In the twenty-fifth century, a time when people have designations instead of names, a man, THX 1138, and a woman, LUH 3417, rebel against their rigidly controlled society.

Director: George Lucas | Stars: Robert Duvall, Donald Pleasence, Don Pedro Colley, Maggie McOmie

Votes: 42,773 | Gross: $2.44M

7. Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983)

PG | 131 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

58 Metascore

After a daring mission to rescue Han Solo from Jabba the Hutt, the rebels dispatch to Endor to destroy a more powerful Death Star. Meanwhile, Luke struggles to help Vader back from the dark side without falling into the Emperor's trap.

Director: Richard Marquand | Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams

Votes: 803,145 | Gross: $309.13M

8. Dune (1984)

PG-13 | 137 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

40 Metascore

A Duke's son leads desert warriors against the galactic emperor and his father's evil nemesis when they assassinate his father and free their desert world from the emperor's rule.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Kyle MacLachlan, Virginia Madsen, Francesca Annis, Leonardo Cimino

Votes: 106,123 | Gross: $30.93M

9. The Thing (1982)

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

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: 305,293 | Gross: $13.78M

10. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)

PG | 138 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

90 Metascore

After an accidental encounter with otherworldly vessels, an ordinary man follows a series of psychic clues to the first scheduled meeting between representatives of Earth and visitors from the cosmos.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, François Truffaut, Teri Garr, Melinda Dillon

Votes: 157,851 | Gross: $132.09M

11. The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

G | 92 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

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: 69,369

12. The Andromeda Strain (1971)

G | 131 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller

60 Metascore

A group of scientists investigate a deadly new alien virus before it can spread.

Director: Robert Wise | Stars: James Olson, Arthur Hill, David Wayne, Kate Reid

Votes: 28,709

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

PG | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

82 Metascore

After the rebels are brutally overpowered by the Empire on the ice planet Hoth, Luke Skywalker begins Jedi training with Yoda, while his friends are pursued by Darth Vader.

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

Votes: 976,786 | Gross: $290.48M

14. The Matrix (1999)

R | 136 min | Action, Sci-Fi

73 Metascore

A computer hacker learns from mysterious rebels about the true nature of his reality and his role in the war against its controllers.

Directors: Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski | Stars: Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving

Votes: 1,394,965 | Gross: $171.48M

15. Predator (1987)

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

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: 322,192 | Gross: $59.74M

16. Total Recall (1990)

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

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: 264,460 | Gross: $119.39M

17. Moon (2009)

R | 97 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

67 Metascore

Astronaut Sam Bell has a quintessentially personal encounter toward the end of his three-year stint on the Moon, where he, working alongside his computer, GERTY, sends back to Earth parcels of a resource that has helped diminish our planet's power problems.

Director: Duncan Jones | Stars: Sam Rockwell, Kevin Spacey, Dominique McElligott, Rosie Shaw

Votes: 294,472 | Gross: $5.01M

18. The Road Warrior (1981)

R | 94 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

76 Metascore

In the post-apocalyptic Australian wasteland, a cynical drifter agrees to help a small, gasoline rich, community escape a band of bandits.

Director: George Miller | Stars: Mel Gibson, Bruce Spence, Michael Preston, Max Phipps

Votes: 147,713 | Gross: $12.47M

19. Twelve Monkeys (1995)

R | 129 min | Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller

74 Metascore

In a future world devastated by disease, a convict is sent back in time to gather information about the man-made virus that wiped out most of the human population on the planet.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe, Brad Pitt, Joseph Melito

Votes: 518,951 | Gross: $57.14M

20. Strange Invaders (1983)

PG | 92 min | Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi

Charlie's ex-wife disappears, and he travels to where she grew up--a rural town in the Midwest--to look for her. But, surprisingly, nobody knows about her or any of her many relatives, the ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Laughlin | Stars: Paul Le Mat, Nancy Allen, Diana Scarwid, Michael Lerner

Votes: 2,176 | Gross: $1.36M

This Edward Hopperish, spoof, pulp, semi-humourous, homenage sci-fi horror movie still surprises me after 27 years as I saw it then and was scared by its special effects.

21. Solaris (1972)

PG | 167 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

90 Metascore

A psychologist is sent to a station orbiting a distant planet in order to discover what has caused the crew to go insane.

Director: Andrei Tarkovsky | Stars: Natalya Bondarchuk, Donatas Banionis, Jüri Järvet, Vladislav Dvorzhetskiy

Votes: 63,804

22. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

PG | 115 min | Family, Sci-Fi

91 Metascore

A troubled child summons the courage to help a friendly alien escape Earth and return to his home world.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Henry Thomas, Drew Barrymore, Peter Coyote, Dee Wallace

Votes: 316,810 | Gross: $435.11M

23. Fantastic Voyage (1966)

PG | 100 min | Adventure, Family, Sci-Fi

A scientist is nearly assassinated. In order to save him, a submarine is shrunken to microscopic size and injected into his blood stream with a small crew. Problems arise almost as soon as they enter the bloodstream.

Director: Richard Fleischer | Stars: Stephen Boyd, Raquel Welch, Edmond O'Brien, Donald Pleasence

Votes: 14,703

24. Outland (1981)

R | 112 min | Action, Crime, Sci-Fi

In the distant future, a police marshal stationed at a remote mining colony on the Jupiter moon of Io uncovers a drug-smuggling conspiracy, and gets no help from the populace when he later finds himself marked for murder.

Director: Peter Hyams | Stars: Sean Connery, Frances Sternhagen, Peter Boyle, James Sikking

Votes: 23,683 | Gross: $17.37M

25. Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)

G | 132 min | Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi

48 Metascore

When an alien spacecraft of enormous power is spotted approaching Earth, Admiral James T. Kirk resumes command of the overhauled USS Enterprise in order to intercept it.

Director: Robert Wise | Stars: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, James Doohan

Votes: 70,677 | Gross: $82.26M

26. TRON (1982)

PG | 96 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

58 Metascore

A computer hacker is abducted into the digital world and forced to participate in gladiatorial games where his only chance of escape is with the help of a heroic security program.

Director: Steven Lisberger | Stars: Jeff Bridges, Bruce Boxleitner, David Warner, Cindy Morgan

Votes: 101,779 | Gross: $33.00M

27. The Terminator (1984)

R | 107 min | Action, Sci-Fi

83 Metascore

A seemingly indestructible Android is sent from 2029 to 1984 to assassinate a waitress, whose unborn son will lead humanity in a war against the machines, while a soldier from that war is sent to protect her at all cost

Director: James Cameron | Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Michael Biehn, Paul Winfield

Votes: 683,589 | Gross: $38.40M

28. The Man from Earth (2007)

Not Rated | 87 min | Drama, Fantasy, Sci-Fi

An impromptu goodbye party for Professor John Oldman becomes a mysterious interrogation after the retiring scholar reveals to his colleagues he has a longer and stranger past than they can imagine.

Director: Richard Schenkman | Stars: David Lee Smith, Tony Todd, John Billingsley, Ellen Crawford

Votes: 150,890

29. The Divide (2011)

R | 112 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

28 Metascore

Survivors of a nuclear attack are grouped together for days in the basement of their apartment building, where fear and dwindling supplies wear away at their dynamic.

Director: Xavier Gens | Stars: Lauren German, Michael Biehn, Milo Ventimiglia, Courtney B. Vance

Votes: 32,540 | Gross: $0.02M

30. Altered States (1980)

R | 102 min | Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

58 Metascore

A Harvard scientist conducts experiments on himself with a hallucinatory drug and an isolation chamber that may be causing him to regress genetically.

Director: Ken Russell | Stars: William Hurt, Blair Brown, Bob Balaban, Charles Haid

Votes: 27,032 | Gross: $19.85M

31. Metropolis (1927)

Not Rated | 153 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

98 Metascore

In a futuristic city sharply divided between the working class and the city planners, the son of the city's mastermind falls in love with a working class prophet who predicts the coming of a savior to mediate their differences.

Director: Fritz Lang | Stars: Brigitte Helm, Alfred Abel, Gustav Fröhlich, Rudolf Klein-Rogge

Votes: 132,591 | Gross: $0.03M

32. Planet of the Apes (1968)

G | 112 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi

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: 149,964 | Gross: $33.40M

33. The Fly (1986)

R | 96 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

79 Metascore

A brilliant but eccentric scientist begins to transform into a giant man/fly hybrid after one of his experiments goes horribly wrong.

Director: David Cronenberg | Stars: Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz, Joy Boushel

Votes: 135,006 | Gross: $40.46M

34. The Brood (1979)

R | 92 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

A man tries to uncover an unconventional psychologist's therapy techniques on his institutionalized wife, amidst a series of brutal murders.

Director: David Cronenberg | Stars: Oliver Reed, Samantha Eggar, Art Hindle, Henry Beckman

Votes: 20,861

35. A Trip to the Moon (1902)

TV-G | 13 min | Short, Adventure, Fantasy

A group of astronomers go on an expedition to the Moon.

Director: Georges Méliès | Stars: Georges Méliès, Victor André, Bleuette Bernon, Brunnet

Votes: 35,277

36. RoboCop (1987)

R | 102 min | Action, Crime, Sci-Fi

67 Metascore

In a dystopic and crime-ridden Detroit, a terminally wounded cop returns to the force as a powerful cyborg haunted by submerged memories.

Director: Paul Verhoeven | Stars: Peter Weller, Nancy Allen, Dan O'Herlihy, Ronny Cox

Votes: 202,449 | Gross: $53.42M

37. Journey to the Center of the Earth (1959)

G | 132 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy

An Edinburgh professor and assorted colleagues follow an explorer's trail down an extinct Icelandic volcano to the earth's center.

Director: Henry Levin | Stars: James Mason, Pat Boone, Arlene Dahl, Diane Baker

Votes: 13,066 | Gross: $10.00M

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

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

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: 5,590 | Gross: $5.00M

39. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

R | 108 min | Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi

89 Metascore

When their relationship turns sour, a young couple undergoes a medical procedure to have each other erased from their memories.

Director: Michel Gondry | Stars: Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet, Tom Wilkinson, Gerry Robert Byrne

Votes: 767,837 | Gross: $34.40M

40. A Clockwork Orange (1971)

R | 136 min | Crime, Drama, Sci-Fi

78 Metascore

In the future, a sadistic gang leader is imprisoned and volunteers for a conduct-aversion experiment, but it doesn't go as planned.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke

Votes: 642,034

41. Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991)

PG | 110 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

65 Metascore

On the eve of retirement, Kirk and McCoy are charged with assassinating the Klingon High Chancellor and imprisoned. The Enterprise crew must help them escape to thwart a conspiracy aimed at sabotaging the last best hope for peace.

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

Votes: 61,438 | Gross: $74.89M

42. Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985)

PG-13 | 107 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

80 Metascore

After being exiled from the most advanced town in post apocalyptic Australia, a drifter travels with a group of abandoned children to rebel against the town's queen.

Directors: George Miller, George Ogilvie | Stars: Mel Gibson, Tina Turner, Bruce Spence, Adam Cockburn

Votes: 112,399 | Gross: $36.20M

43. Mad Max (1979)

R | 88 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

67 Metascore

In a self-destructing world, a vengeful Australian policeman sets out to stop a violent motorcycle gang.

Director: George Miller | Stars: Mel Gibson, Joanne Samuel, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Steve Bisley

Votes: 168,095 | Gross: $8.75M