113 Recommended Sci-Fi Movies

by fatpie42 | created - 13 Nov 2012 | updated - 10 Mar 2013 | Public

This list is missing a few of the presumed classics like "2001: A Space Odyssey" and "Blade Runner" because, quick frankly, I found them boring.

Every single one of the films on this list is a film I would personally recommend to sci-fi fans and none of them are there simply because I think they 'ought' to be included.

All films are included in year order.

Hope you all enjoy the list!

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1. 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: 70,602

2. It Came from Outer Space (1953)

Approved | 81 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

A spaceship from another world crashes in the Arizona desert and only an amateur stargazer and a schoolteacher suspect alien influence when the local townsfolk begin to act strangely.

Director: Jack Arnold | Stars: Richard Carlson, Barbara Rush, Charles Drake, Joe Sawyer

Votes: 7,130

3. Gojira (1954)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

78 Metascore

American nuclear weapons testing results in the creation of a seemingly unstoppable, dinosaur-like beast.

Director: Ishirô Honda | Stars: Takashi Shimura, Akihiko Hirata, Akira Takarada, Momoko Kôchi

Votes: 23,121 | Gross: $2.42M

4. Them! (1954)

Not Rated | 94 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

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: 17,324

5. Earth vs. the Flying Saucers (1956)

Unrated | 83 min | Action, Sci-Fi

Extraterrestrials traveling in high-tech flying saucers contact a scientist as part of a plan to enslave the inhabitants of Earth.

Director: Fred F. Sears | Stars: Hugh Marlowe, Joan Taylor, Donald Curtis, Morris Ankrum

Votes: 6,077

6. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)

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

92 Metascore

A small-town doctor learns that the population of his community is being replaced by emotionless alien duplicates.

Director: Don Siegel | Stars: Kevin McCarthy, Dana Wynter, Larry Gates, King Donovan

Votes: 39,274

7. The Fly (1958)

Not Rated | 94 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

A scientist has a horrific accident when he tries to use his newly invented teleportation device.

Director: Kurt Neumann | Stars: David Hedison, Patricia Owens, Vincent Price, Herbert Marshall

Votes: 18,069 | Gross: $3.00M

8. Village of the Damned (1960)

Not Rated | 77 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

In the English village of Midwich, the blonde-haired, glowing-eyed children of uncertain paternity prove to have frightening powers.

Director: Wolf Rilla | Stars: George Sanders, Barbara Shelley, Michael Gwynn, Laurence Naismith

Votes: 12,707

9. The Brain That Wouldn't Die (1962)

Approved | 82 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

A doctor experimenting with transplant techniques keeps his girlfriend's head alive when she is decapitated in a car crash, then goes hunting for a new body.

Director: Joseph Green | Stars: Jason Evers, Virginia Leith, Anthony La Penna, Adele Lamont

Votes: 5,351

10. X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes (1963)

Not Rated | 79 min | Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

A doctor uses special eye drops to give himself x-ray vision, but the new power has disastrous consequences.

Director: Roger Corman | Stars: Ray Milland, Diana Van der Vlis, Harold J. Stone, John Hoyt

Votes: 5,210

11. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)

PG | 95 min | Comedy

96 Metascore

An insane general triggers a path to nuclear holocaust that a War Room full of politicians and generals frantically tries to stop.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, Sterling Hayden, Keenan Wynn

Votes: 400,638 | Gross: $0.28M

12. Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Unrated | 89 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

A greedy developer unwittingly hatches a gigantic baby moth upon Tokyo, while Godzilla strikes once again.

Director: Ishirô Honda | Stars: Akira Takarada, Yuriko Hoshi, Hiroshi Koizumi, Yû Fujiki

Votes: 5,791

13. Five Million Years to Earth (1967)

Approved | 97 min | Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi

A mysterious artifact is unearthed in London, and famous scientist Bernard Quatermass is called into to divine its origins and explain its strange effects on people.

Director: Roy Ward Baker | Stars: James Donald, Andrew Keir, Barbara Shelley, Julian Glover

Votes: 8,227

14. Night of the Living Dead (1968)

Not Rated | 96 min | Horror

88 Metascore

There is panic throughout the nation as the dead suddenly come back to life. The film follows a group of characters who barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these bloodthirsty, flesh-eating monsters.

Director: George A. Romero | Stars: Duane Jones, Judith O'Dea, Karl Hardman, Marilyn Eastman

Votes: 101,144 | Gross: $0.09M

15. 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: 152,625 | Gross: $33.40M

16. Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971)

G | 98 min | Action, Sci-Fi

69 Metascore

The world is shocked by the appearance of three talking chimpanzees, who arrived mysteriously in a U.S. spacecraft. They become the toast of society, but one man believes them to be a threat to the human race.

Director: Don Taylor | Stars: Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Bradford Dillman, Natalie Trundy

Votes: 28,318 | Gross: $12.30M

17. Westworld (1973)

PG | 88 min | Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller

77 Metascore

A robot malfunction creates havoc and terror for unsuspecting vacationers at a futuristic, adult-themed amusement park.

Director: Michael Crichton | Stars: Yul Brynner, Richard Benjamin, James Brolin, Norman Bartold

Votes: 44,559

18. A Boy and His Dog (1975)

R | 91 min | Comedy, Drama, Sci-Fi

A young man and his telepathic dog wander a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

Director: L.Q. Jones | Stars: Don Johnson, Jason Robards, Susanne Benton, Tim McIntire

Votes: 14,695 | Gross: $6.90M

19. Death Race 2000 (1975)

R | 80 min | Action, Comedy, Sci-Fi

59 Metascore

In a dystopian future, a cross country automobile race requires contestants to run down innocent pedestrians to gain points that are tallied based on each kill's brutality.

Director: Paul Bartel | Stars: David Carradine, Sylvester Stallone, Simone Griffeth, Mary Woronov

Votes: 22,068 | Gross: $8.00M

20. Capricorn One (1977)

PG | 123 min | Action, Thriller

A NASA Mars mission won't work, and its funding is endangered, so they decide to fake it just this once. But then they have to keep the secret.

Director: Peter Hyams | Stars: Elliott Gould, James Brolin, Brenda Vaccaro, Sam Waterston

Votes: 17,914

21. 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: 1,077,417 | Gross: $322.74M

22. Superman (1978)

PG | 143 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

80 Metascore

An alien orphan is sent from his dying planet to Earth, where he grows up to become his adoptive home's first and greatest superhero.

Director: Richard Donner | Stars: Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder, Gene Hackman, Marlon Brando

Votes: 143,157 | Gross: $134.22M

23. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)

PG | 115 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

75 Metascore

In San Francisco, a group of people discover the human race is being replaced one by one, with clones devoid of emotion.

Director: Philip Kaufman | Stars: Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum, Veronica Cartwright

Votes: 44,252 | Gross: $24.95M

24. 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: 72,332 | Gross: $82.26M

25. 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: 1,007,103 | Gross: $290.48M

26. Time Bandits (1981)

PG | 110 min | Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy

79 Metascore

A young boy accidentally joins a band of time travelling dwarves, as they jump from era to era looking for treasure to steal.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Sean Connery, Shelley Duvall, John Cleese, Katherine Helmond

Votes: 51,724 | Gross: $42.37M

27. Scanners (1981)

R | 103 min | Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

60 Metascore

A scientist sends a man with extraordinary psychic powers to hunt others like him.

Director: David Cronenberg | Stars: Jennifer O'Neill, Stephen Lack, Patrick McGoohan, Lawrence Dane

Votes: 41,248 | Gross: $14.23M

28. The Road Warrior (1981)

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

77 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: 150,724 | Gross: $12.47M

29. The Thing (1982)

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

57 Metascore

A research team in Antarctica is hunted by a shape-shifting alien that assumes the appearance of its victims.

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

Votes: 316,023 | Gross: $13.78M

30. Videodrome (1983)

R | 87 min | Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

60 Metascore

When he acquires a different kind of show for his station, a sleazy cable-TV programmer begins to see his life and the future of media spin out of control in a terrifying new reality.

Director: David Cronenberg | Stars: James Woods, Debbie Harry, Sonja Smits, Peter Dvorsky

Votes: 71,709 | Gross: $2.12M

31. 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: 826,880 | Gross: $309.13M

32. Ghostbusters (1984)

PG | 105 min | Action, Comedy, Fantasy

71 Metascore

Three former parapsychology professors set up shop as a unique ghost removal service.

Director: Ivan Reitman | Stars: Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Sigourney Weaver, Harold Ramis

Votes: 312,175 | Gross: $238.63M

33. The Terminator (1984)

R | 107 min | Action, Sci-Fi

84 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 costs.

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

Votes: 701,527 | Gross: $38.40M

34. Back to the Future (1985)

PG | 116 min | Adventure, Comedy, Sci-Fi

87 Metascore

Marty McFly, a 17-year-old high school student, is accidentally sent thirty years into the past in a time-traveling DeLorean invented by his close friend, the maverick scientist Doc Brown.

Director: Robert Zemeckis | Stars: Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson, Crispin Glover

Votes: 887,208 | Gross: $210.61M

35. The Return of the Living Dead (1985)

R | 91 min | Comedy, Horror, Sci-Fi

66 Metascore

When two bumbling employees at a medical supply warehouse accidentally release a deadly gas into the air, the vapors cause the dead to rise again as zombies.

Director: Dan O'Bannon | Stars: Clu Gulager, James Karen, Don Calfa, Thom Mathews

Votes: 46,410 | Gross: $14.24M

36. Re-Animator (1985)

Unrated | 105 min | Comedy, Horror, Sci-Fi

A dedicated student at a medical college and his girlfriend become involved in bizarre experiments centering around the re-animation of dead tissue when an odd new student arrives on campus.

Director: Stuart Gordon | Stars: Jeffrey Combs, Bruce Abbott, Barbara Crampton, David Gale

Votes: 47,437 | Gross: $2.02M

37. Day of the Dead (1985)

Not Rated | 96 min | Horror, Thriller

60 Metascore

A small group of military officers and scientists dwell in an underground bunker as the world above is overrun by zombies.

Director: George A. Romero | Stars: Lori Cardille, Terry Alexander, Joseph Pilato, Jarlath Conroy

Votes: 56,068 | Gross: $5.80M

38. Flight of the Navigator (1986)

PG | 90 min | Adventure, Family, Sci-Fi

64 Metascore

In 1978, a boy travels 8 years into the future and has an adventure with an intelligent, wisecracking alien ship.

Director: Randal Kleiser | Stars: Joey Cramer, Paul Reubens, Cliff De Young, Veronica Cartwright

Votes: 38,722 | Gross: $18.56M

39. Aliens (1986)

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

84 Metascore

Ellen Ripley is rescued by a deep salvage team after being in hypersleep for 57 years. The moon that the Nostromo visited 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: 578,765 | Gross: $85.16M

40. 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: 139,246 | Gross: $40.46M

41. Castle in the Sky (1986)

PG | 125 min | Animation, Adventure, Fantasy

78 Metascore

A young boy and a girl with a magic crystal must race against pirates and foreign agents in a search for a legendary floating castle.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Anna Paquin, James Van Der Beek, Cloris Leachman, Mark Hamill

Votes: 121,077

42. Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)

PG | 119 min | Adventure, Comedy, Sci-Fi

71 Metascore

To save Earth from an alien probe, Admiral James T. Kirk and his fugitive crew go back in time to San Francisco in 1986 to retrieve the only beings who can communicate with it: humpback whales.

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

Votes: 70,116 | Gross: $109.71M

43. Short Circuit (1986)

PG | 98 min | Comedy, Family, Sci-Fi

50 Metascore

Number 5 of a group of experimental robots in a lab is electrocuted, suddenly becomes intelligent, and escapes.

Director: John Badham | Stars: Ally Sheedy, Steve Guttenberg, Fisher Stevens, Austin Pendleton

Votes: 49,914 | Gross: $40.70M

44. 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: 207,769 | Gross: $53.42M

45. Masters of the Universe (1987)

PG | 106 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

35 Metascore

The heroic warrior He-Man battles against the evil lord Skeletor and his armies of darkness for control of Castle Grayskull.

Director: Gary Goddard | Stars: Dolph Lundgren, Frank Langella, Meg Foster, Billy Barty

Votes: 32,313 | Gross: $17.34M

46. Innerspace (1987)

PG | 120 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

66 Metascore

A hapless store clerk must foil criminals to save the life of the man who, miniaturized in a secret experiment, was accidentally injected into him.

Director: Joe Dante | Stars: Dennis Quaid, Martin Short, Meg Ryan, Kevin McCarthy

Votes: 48,001 | Gross: $25.89M

47. They Live (1988)

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

52 Metascore

A drifter discovers a pair of sunglasses that allow him to wake up to the fact that aliens have taken over the Earth.

Director: John Carpenter | Stars: Roddy Piper, Keith David, Meg Foster, George 'Buck' Flower

Votes: 90,808 | Gross: $13.01M

48. Akira (1988)

R | 124 min | Animation, Action, Drama

A secret military project endangers Neo-Tokyo when it turns a biker gang member into a rampaging psychic psychopath that only two teenagers and a group of psychics can stop.

Director: Katsuhiro Ôtomo | Stars: Mitsuo Iwata, Nozomu Sasaki, Mami Koyama, Tesshô Genda

Votes: 131,358 | Gross: $0.55M

49. The Blob (1988)

R | 95 min | Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

Remake of the 1958 sci-fi horror classic about a deadly blob from another planet which consumes everything in its path. Teenagers attempt without success to warn the townspeople, who refuse to take them seriously.

Director: Chuck Russell | Stars: Shawnee Smith, Kevin Dillon, Donovan Leitch Jr., Jeffrey DeMunn

Votes: 26,922 | Gross: $8.25M

50. Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)

PG | 90 min | Adventure, Comedy, Music

6.9