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The Best Sci-Fi Movies

The Best of the Best Science Fiction Movies

The Sci-Fi genre is arguably one of the most exciting in the film industry. The freedom of Sci-Fi allows almost endless subject matter possibilities. Hence, Science Fiction movies, unlike other movie genres, are able to explore novel ideas and ask insightful questions about what the future holds.

There have been some fantastic Sci-Fi movies over the past couple of decades, but there have also been some terrible Sci-Fi films made too. As an avid watcher of science fiction movies, I've sifted through my fair share of disappointing Sci-Fi flicks. To help others find the best Science Fiction movies out there, I've made a recommendation list of the Top 10 Science Fiction movies.

Note, you might also want to check out the Top 10 Science Fiction Movies that Make You That Make You Thinklist for some related recommendations.

The science fiction movie that pioneered the whole cyber punk movement and influenced the whole futuristic dystopian look that's now popular in video games and in cinema. The movie (which was originally panned in the North American box office) is hailed for its thematic complexity. With the retrofitted future portrayed in the film, Blade Runner has spawned an entire cinema and literary subculture. At its core, this movie grapples with what it means to be human in a world where humans can be manufactured. The film is credited with prefiguring important concerns such as globalization, overpopulation, climate change, and genetic manipulation. There are multiple versions of this film, but most fans feel the director's final cut is the true version.

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In a world increasingly influenced by genetic research, Gattaca has some terrifying relevance: what if you could be distinguished, not on the basis of race or color, but by your very genes? This movie came out in 1995 and was way ahead of its time. The plot, characters, and questions explored make this film a must watch.

With a Martin-esque plot and Jim Butcher pace, The Axe and the Throne is a definite "must read" for even the pickiest fantasy fans.

In his stunning debut, Ireman has built the type of world so vivid and engrossing that leaving it at the end is agony. In spite of leaning toward grimdark, where authors often enshroud every scene in depressing darkness, there is no lack of cheerful moments or brilliant scenery. Yet the pangs of near-instant nostalgia that come after you put down a book like this have less to do with the inspired setting, and far more to do with those who inhabit it. 

From savage, unremorseful heroes, to deep, introspective villains, the cast of this story is comprised of believable characters capable of unthinkable actions. And it is these characters -- the ones you wish you could share a drink with or end up wanting to kill -- that forge the connection between fantasy and reality. Keethro, Titon, Ethel, Annora. These are names you will never forget, and each belongs to a man or woman as unique as they are memorable. 


No book would be complete without a its fair share of intrigue, however, and there is no lack of it here. Each chapter leaves you wanting more, and Ireman's masterful use of misdirection leads to an abundance of "oh shit" moments. Do not be fooled (or do -- perhaps that's part of the fun) by storylines that may appear trope-ish at first. This is no fairytale. 

Available on Amazon & Audible, Barns & Noble, iTunes, Google, and Kobo.

The Matrix was pretty much a hodgepodge of Philip K. Dick ideas and various eastern mythologies -- but somehow the blend just works. Perhaps it was the over-the-top, never-been-seen special effects, or Trinity's skin-tight suit, but whatever the reason, the Matrix just plain rocks. Oh and the sequels? Forget they were ever made.

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A horror masterpiece set in an alien landscape. Everything about this film just works. The big debate is between fans about whether Ridley Scott's film, Alien, is superior to the James Cameron's sequel, Aliens. Both films are great and the directorial style of both films is quite different. Out of personal preference, I prefer Alien, but Aliens is equally enthralling (and terrifying!).

If Helen was a face that spawned a thousand ships, then Arthur C. Clarke's 2001: A Space Odyssey is a book that spawned a thousand science fiction novels. The style of the movie (it's a Stanley Kubrick film, so of course it's got style) and the film's atmosphere really add dimension to Clarke's original novel. This is one of the great science fiction movies out there.

A blend of almost every mythical archetype you can think of but wow, what a set of movies. There's something magical about these movies; maybe it's the vicarious pleasure of juggling some badass-looking lightsaber while rescuing scantily clad princesses that appeals to the nerd inside of us; or maybe it's the idea of a grand adventure in a far away galaxy infested with our nerd fantasies. Whatever the case, the original Star Wars movies have been around for decades but still retain the original magic. Star wars is a story that will appeal to all ages. 

The new "prequel" series (Episodes I,II,III) are worth watching but lack the magic of the "original" trilogy.

This recent movie is one of the great disaster movies of our time. What's even more disturbing is the movie shows a plausible future that may not be that far off. The plausible storyline, great acting, and memorizing action sequences make this movie something special.

Sometimes you need a stylish, fun, over-the-top sci-fi action flick like The 5th Element. The 5th Element is full of bizarre characters and an even more bizarre world. It's great blend of high adventure, cyberpunk, adventure, romance, comedy, and Bruce Willis throwing around his guns. If you want a fun, fun thrill ride through the galaxy that's entertaining as hell, you need to check out The Fifth Element. 

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Valley of Embers kicks off a new epic fantasy that has best been described as a blend of East and West, Miyazaki and Tolkien, with many readers drawing comparisons to Princess Mononoke, Avatar: The Last Airbender and the Legend of Zelda.

The story follows a group of Landkist, powerful elemental warriors as varied as the lands they come from, as they seek to uncover the mystery at the heart of the Valley that has sheltered—and perhaps ensnared—them for a century, and the mythic guardian who has been lost to them for a generation. 

Leading the Landkist is Kole Reyna, a flame-wielding Ember, and one of the last of his kind. Kole takes on the grudging role of Valley hero, and in so doing, he hopes to learn the truth of a mother lost before her time. 

With Valley of Embers, discover the start of a new, unique epic and witness the Landkist rise up against the might of the Sages set in a world on the brink of collapse, balancing on the knife’s edge between darkness and light.

Get Valley of Embers on Amazon.com for a brand new epic fantasy series you don't want to miss.

This oldie is still a real goodie. Tron is both action story and allegory critique of the personal computer revolution of the 80s. The Tron world makes techies into heroes (sadly, no longer true). With special effects out of this world in 1982, this cult classic is still enjoyable today and can be appreciated for what it was and still is: a damn fine science fiction flick.  The new Tron (Tron 2) lacks some of the magic of the old Tron, but is a pretty good action flick. Not good enough to replace Tron 1, however.

An action sci-fi flick with an intelligent plot and lots of action. While it lacks the pure visual style and situational comedy of The Fifth Element, 12 Monkeys delivers an altogether different sort of thrill ride. It's darker, more intelligent, and ultimately one of the best "intelligent" action sci-fi films out there. If you loved the likes of the Fifth Element and the action of Terminator series, 12 Monkeys is a film you should definitely check out.

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