Presenting the best sci-fi movies to take you back in time and let you see the future in action

best sci-fi movies
best sci-fi movies

Do you get excited when you hear about time-travel, robots, extraterrestrial life, or a parallel universe? If your answer is yes, you are definitely a science fiction fanatic. Sci-fi doesn’t make you think, it makes you wonder! This genre of movies was designed to bring out imaginative places, seemingly impossible journeys, and technology in the future. There are so many movies taking us to a wonderland where superheroes, droids, as well as advanced science and technology, will amaze you. You might have a really hard time to choose amidst the plethora of options.

30 best sci-fi movies

Let us make your job easy! We have ranked a few of the best sci-fi movies for you.


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Are you someone who is fascinated by violent action scenes and cyborgs? Robocop (original version) has all of it. Satire is an element in this movie that makes it stand out. It also has fun elements alongside a message about modern society, making it all the more relevant for today’s society than the 1980s. It’s a shrewd film where individuals transform into a red mist utilizing machine guns of high caliber.

The Fifth Element

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Among the best sci-fi movies, this science fiction took time to become a massive hit in the box office. Later, watching through streaming services, many more people came to know about this film. In this movie, Bruce Willis was a cab driver who gets maneuvered into a battle for galactic endurance by a beautiful lady played by Milla Jovovich. The reason is primary yet on account of magnificently fun characters like Ruby Rhod (Chris Tucker) and a melodic number that will stay in our minds for long, this one will endure the trial of time.


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The computer was a significant invention, and it was in high demand during the 1980s, although people did not understand its functioning correctly. Tron was a science fiction movie that considered what was genuinely happening inside the machine. It is definitely a movie that portrays old innovations, but you necessarily can’t think little of what the film brought to the screen when it was released. The animation that has led to the advanced world was never seen before this movie was out, influencing many more movies ahead.

The Abyss

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Although this movie’s concept is among the best sci-fi movies, it was surprisingly underrated. Alien life is explored deep in the ocean, where James Cameron is in a dilemma about what is happening underwater. Animated characters and claustrophobic environment makes the film very exciting- thanks to Industrial Light and Magic! If you have not watched the movie, do not delay any more.


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Christopher Nolan directed this contemporary sci-fi starring Leonardo Di Caprio. You are forced to wonder: Is it all a dream? However, the movie showed that information was stolen from people’s minds by entering into their ideas with the help of technology. The best part is that it has a set of norms followed in the entire movie, which made it appear realistic. Additionally, there are astonishing visuals that appear practical, making this film a must-watch sci-fi.

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Ex Machina

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Can you ever relate to a machine the way you connect with human beings? If this holds true, then what is the concept of being alive? This movie is a dramatic sci-fi and brings out Artificial Intelligence excellently compared to some of the other best sci-fi movies. Ava is a character played by Alicia Vikandrer, an artificial life-form who does not ensure emotional existence and consciousness. No guns involved, no explosions, this sci-fi purely about people, although one among them isn’t real.

Edge of Tomorrow

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Tom Cruise plays the role of a military officer who has never witnessed a battle before. However, currently, he is pushed to the front lines since he comes across alien technology accidentally. He gets to know that the aliens are defeating them as they are capable of traveling back in time and correcting their mistakes. As soon as he adopts the same ability and learns to use it, he is fights and tries to win over the aliens.

Back to the Future

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Isn’t time travel one of the most fascinating concepts? So, which among the best sci-fi movies has made its time travel concept popular? Well, Back to the future is one such movie! It is a perfect blend of sci-fi drama as well comedy. Michael J. Fox plays the role of Marty McFly, who travels back in time from 1985 to 1955. He meets his future parents and not knowing their real relationship, his mother is attracted to him.

12 Monkeys

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12 Monkeys have been among Terry Gilliam’s best sci-fi movies. In this movie, a man goes back in time so that the plague does not spread. Seems to a simple story, right? Well, Gilliam’s movies are never straightforward, and this film got Brad Pitt his first Oscar nomination. Also, the role of Bruce Willis cannot be overlooked. So, watch the movie to feel the nerves!

The Day the Earth Stood Still

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Science fiction has always brought in a concept of the existence of beings other than humans. The Day The Earth Stood Still is one of the classics in this genre. Have you come across the phrase- Klaatu Barada Nikto? However, many of us would not know the origin! This movie had such an impact that the phrase is still used in pop culture. Generally, aliens are portrayed as hostile invaders, but this 1951 movie will make you wonder that we could be the aggressive ones!

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A Korean director, Bong Joon ho made his English language debut in creating one of the best sci-fi movies- Snowpiercer, in 2013. Here, Chris Evans is traveling in the train of the future that is dominated by ice! Survival is possible only if you are on a moving train, and the quality of your life depends on where you are on the train. Be it action or judgment of society, you will find both in this film.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

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This is one of the movies with story narrated-in-reverse, but the purpose is absolutely different from the rest. Kaufman and Gondry have used this form of narration to gradually reveal the forgotten emotions. You won’t find any sudden twists but an emotional journey where the memories of two lovers are wishfully erased.  This is an entirely different aspect of sci-fi, where the past is erased in the future.

The Terminator

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Few of the best sci-fi movies are created with the greatest action-heroes they present. Arnold Schwarzenegger is introduced as the Terminator in this science fiction movie. The Terminator is a killing machine whose action and character of a killing machine is unstoppable and irresistible. He is sent back in time to kill Sarah Corner, whose son would be a savior for humans against machines in the future. This movie portrays a desperate war of humans against the killing machines.


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You can undoubtedly label this animated Pixar film among the best sci-fi movies ever created with parts of Artificial intelligence, the emotion of love seen between artificial beings, and the destruction of human territory. As we all know, Pixar has a record of creating good films, and Wall E is an absolute classic! Eve and Wall E are the most loved animated characters portraying an iconic love story in cinema.

Jurassic Park

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Jurassic Park, by Steven Spielberg, made the concept of green screen famous. This Academy award-winning movie takes you to the era of dinosaurs where five humans must fight to survive among the predators of prehistoric times. The film brings out the art of special effects keeping up with the unstoppable power of imagination. Well, dinosaurs do not spare humans! However, you would certainly not want to be deprived of the breathtaking adventure.

The Martian

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One of the best sci-fi movies, The Martian got nominated for Oscar, and it is definitely a special one! The film is set in space and is a hardcore sci-fi. It brings out the story of survival, space travel, and many scientific facts making the story interesting. Ridley Scott’s movie is about a man who has to deal with his loneliness and survival as he is stranded on a desolate planet. The film also has elements of comedy, and though it seems predictable, the effectiveness remains unchanged.

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Sci-fi has always had quite a few movies bringing out the best action. After Ridley Scott, it would not have been easy for James Cameron to make “Alien.” However, he brought out space marine action and did not try creating an identical atmosphere of the original. The movie was nominated for seven Academy Awards and rated among the best sci-fi movies. This sequel of “Aliens” is portraying great action scenes.

Planet of the Apes

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It was nearly impossible to think that a film portraying the planet governed by the apes will be on-demand in this century. However, this is a science fiction famous for the ending and the way it influenced popular culture! Various adaptations, sequels as well as spoofs were released, and many of those were also appreciated. Nevertheless, the original one got attention as it talks about racial issues.

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

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The list of best sci-fi movies has to include Star Trek among them. In all the films of Star Trek, the second movie of its franchise – Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan has been best rated. If you are a Star Trek fanatic, you will be fascinated to watch it as it brings the greatest villain from the original series. Ricardo Montalban’s evil character is a classic performance, and this remains the best among all its new series.


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Christopher Nolan is building cathedrals in the age of shopping-center cinema. To simplify the plot, it shows a team of explorers traveling through a wormhole in space in an effort to guarantee the future of humankind. “Interstellar” is a dramatic, full of visual dazzle, cinematic ambition, tech bait, and corn (including the real kind), futuristic adventure inspired by sorrow, despair, and remorse.

The Thing

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This movie by John Carpenter is a remake of “The thing from Another World” of 1951. However, it brings out the best horror and science fiction in comparison to the original. The film has left the ending for the viewers to interpret whether the thing was destructed or monster.

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Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

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Star wars trilogy has brought about a revolution in Hollywood. This sequel turns out to be superior to the original. The Empire strikes back has few of the most significant twists throughout the existence of film included and hence, will remain in the viewer’s mind forever.

E.T: The Extra-Terrestrial

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In all the best sci-fi movies that you have seen, aliens are the bad ones who have to be defeated. E.T: Extra-Terrestrial is a Steven Spielberg science fiction that comes up with an alien concept that has to be protected. E.T gives this responsibility to the kids, and hence, it is a movie that can be enjoyed with our families. This is definitely must-watch science fiction.


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When movies were released without sound, Metropolis (1927) came out as one of the most influential and best sci-fi movies. The visuals and other effects that displayed advanced technology were featured in the film ahead of their existence. It is quite challenging to think about the existence of any other science fiction movies on our list without Metropolis.

Close Encounters of the Third Kind

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Well, Steven Spielberg’s films seem to dominate the list of best sci-fi movies. Most science fiction movies lookout for answers to the most common question- Are there beings other than humans? However, “Close encounters of the third kind” is dealing with the issue. It portrays the fascination of humans with the notion of aliens, which makes them find the connection of aliens with the Galaxy.

The Matrix

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The Matrix is a classic and one of the best sci-fi movies portraying action. The plot proceeds such that in a dystopian future, the reality perceived by humans is actually an artificially created reality called Matrix. The sentient machines make this happen to control the human population and use their body’s heat as an energy source. The computer programmer ‘Neo’ learns the truth and rebels against the machines. The storyline is revolutionary as it was one of the first films to use the concept of ‘reality within a reality,’ setting a benchmark for future sci-fi movies. Besides, we hope that we do not get sequels, and further Matrix movies are a continuation of the original.

Blade Runner

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Blade Runner is yet another timeless and one of the best sci-fi movies which have been praised for its compelling visuals and unique storyline. It is based on a legendary novel by Philip K. Dicks and is set in futuristic Los Angeles in 2019. With the advancements of science, artificial beings are created to work in space colonies. The movie has an underlying theme of existentialism with a dark yet thought-provoking plot. Definitely, it is the best sci-fi in its genre.

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Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope

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This is one of the best sci-fi movies that can outlive most of us! Although the film was out in 1977, it is still one of the first movies to be watched by young sci-fi fans. The story is central to the leader of the Rebel Alliance. Star Wars has been able to introduce some of the most iconic characters of cinema. This movie is undoubtedly a masterpiece with one of the most engaging storylines, giving rise to a very loyal fandom.


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The script of this film is so fascinating that it precisely gives you the information you need and nothing other than that. In the movie, the story follows a crew of a spacecraft, Nostromo, that investigates a distress signal coming from a planet. However, they are further attacked by an alien who invades their spacecraft. The story leaves plenty of room for horror and thriller at every corner, making the movie a highlight in sci-fi horror classics.

2001: A Space Odyssey

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The best sci-fi movies listed anywhere would undoubtedly place this film among the top ones. Directed by Stanley Kubrick, this movie leaves the audience to frame the ending based on their beliefs. The video shows a voyage to Jupiter with the HAL computer, capable of feeling and perceiving. The journey begins after an alien is discovered, affecting humans. The film portrays artificial intelligence, human evolution, existence, alien life as well as technology.

Here we come to an end with our 30 best sci-fi movies. Pick according to your interest in the genera of science fiction and go back in time or see the future in action!

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