1. Resident Evil (2002)
The original Resident Evil, which was based on the hugely popular horror video game franchise, was more well-liked by fans than by critics. And what a blockbuster it was—20 years later, the franchise is still being used as the basis for movies and even a Netflix original series.
A virus that breaks out at a top-secret government research center turns all of the workers into zombies and the lab animals into mutant hellhounds, setting the scene for the novel. The government sends an elite task team commanded by Rain (Michelle Rodriguez) in to stop the outbreak, but she quickly finds Alice (Milla Jovovich) suffering from a type of amnesia.
Alice discovers that the infection will become airborne and infect the world in three hours if she is unable to stop it before she has a chance to think back to who she was before the catastrophe.
2. Battle: Los Angeles (2011)
Sometimes all you want is a big, dated alien invasion film. Battle: Los Angeles also performs well. A mysterious extraterrestrial power attacks Earth in 2011 and destroys the planet’s major cities with terrible efficiency.
One of the few cities still standing in Los Angeles, setting up a crucial conflict for the destiny of humanity. Aaron Eckhart’s character, Staff Sergeant Michael Nantz, and his brand-new platoon are the main focus of Earth’s defense against a terrifying foe.
3. Men in Black (1997)
Men In Black, one of the most well-liked science fiction films of the 1990s, blended the intriguing notion that aliens were already thriving on Earth with excellent special effects and the surprisingly endearing odd pair of Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith.
Agent K (Jones) is a veteran of Men In Black, a government organization responsible for controlling the alien population on Earth, in the first movie in the trilogy. This organization is essentially nonexistent. James Edwards (Smith) is therefore hesitant when K asks him to join the agency.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much time left for the newly named Agent J to settle in and pick up the necessary skills because an invading alien has already clandestinely touched down on the planet. And if Earth is destroyed, the alien danger might even wipe out the entire cosmos.
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4. The Adam Project (2022)
The Adam Project was ultimately revived by Netflix after a decade of development hell, during which Tom Cruise was once set to feature. Adam Reed (Ryan Reynolds), a fighter pilot who lives in a dystopian 2050, is the main character of our story.
The adult Adam is compelled to team up with his younger self (Walker Scobell) in order to free the world from the tyrannical hands of Maya Sorian (Catherine Keener), the horrible ruler of the future, as his time jet crashes into 2022 while he is operating it to save his wife.
Ryan Reynolds has done everything by this time, especially when it comes to action. Reynolds has a lot of his well-known skills on display, but The Adam Project’s sci-fi framework provides him a great sandbox to play in. He also gives a performance that is a notch or two above what we would typically witness.
5. Stowaway (2021)
The sci-fi movie Stowaway gives new meaning to concepts like “sacrifice” and “preservation” by examining how far people will go to defend one another. The three planetary researchers find Michael (Shamier Anderson) stranded within the spacecraft as they follow the crew (played by Anna Kendrick, Toni Collette, and Daniel Dae Kim) of a spacecraft headed for Mars.
The displaced launch engineer literally becomes entangled in a carbon dioxide purifier and accidentally destroys it, depriving everyone on board of valuable oxygen. The crew must make some heartbreaking and dangerous decisions in order to make it safely to Mars as the amount of air they have left to breathe begins to run out.
Nothing raises the stakes in a life-or-death situation like the absence of the comforting Earth, and Stowaway does a superb job of handling this tried-and-true sci-fi formula.
6. Synchronic (2020)
Anthony Mackie and Steve Dornan play New Orleans paramedics Steve and Dennis in the movie Synchronic. When Dennis’ daughter goes missing, the emergency personnel are compelled to look for the elusive narcotic Synchronic after a number of fatalities are connected to it.
The interdimensional time travel and mind-altering drug may play a bigger role in her disappearance than any medical technician could have ever imagined. Synchronic skillfully balances its sci-fi horror leanings while maintaining the look and feel of a gritty 1970s movie, giving thrill after thrill as the plot develops and time starts to bend.
7. The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
Although it may seem strange to include a high-profile, widely popular superhero film on a list like this, this Spider-Man movie is actually quite science fiction. Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans), who was formerly Dr. Parker’s business partner, works in a lab with Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) to advance human evolution.
Connors eventually finds himself on a collision path with Spider-Man when he tries his experimental serum on himself, unaware that Peter is essentially on another evolutionary level than Spider-Man.
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8. Contagion (2011)
Are we out of quarantine enough for you to feel at ease watching Contagion? Hopefully, because in light of recent events, this movie serves as an intriguing cautionary tale. The world’s medical establishment is scrambling to discover a treatment and calm the panic as a deadly airborne virus spreads throughout the planet and threatens to rip apart society’s basic foundation.
9. Gattaca (1997)
In the far future, eugenics has become a widely accepted branch of science, determining an individual’s life trajectory based on their DNA. Despite being born with a disability that precludes him from going into space, Vincent Freeman (Ethan Hawke) is obstinately eager to get accepted into the famous GATTACA space programme.
10. War of the Worlds (2005)
The lead actors in Steven Spielberg’s modernized version of H.G. Wells’s classic story of an alien invasion are Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning. A weird, strong lightning storm strikes just after Cruise’s character, Ray Ferrier, a divorced dockworker, and somewhat estranged father picks up his teenage son and baby daughter for a rare weekend visit.
This causes Ferrier to go into overdrive. The storm portends an invasion that will determine how far humanity will advance.
11. Spawn (1997)
Spawn would have likely been a stronger film if it had been released approximately ten years later, during the superhero craze and after Marvel figured out the formula. As a result, it is a satisfyingly violent, noir-style B-movie.
Government assassin Al Simmons (Michael Jai White) is given the chance to return to Earth if he’s ready to command Hell’s army after being betrayed by his boss Jason Wynn (Martin Sheen). Simmons, a demonically reincarnated Hellspawn, makes his way back to Earth but chooses to do good deeds rather than follow the orders of the Devil’s minions.
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12. The Mitchells vs. the Machines (2021)
You want to introduce sci-fi to youngsters. It should work because of Lord/post-apocalyptic Miller’s cartoon thrill ride (The Lego Movie, Solo: A Star Wars Story). Katie Mitchell, a teenager, finds it difficult to relate to her eccentric family, especially her father, who couldn’t be more different from Katie.
But when Katie departs for film school, her father cancels her flight to LA out of worry that he would lose her forever. Instead, he takes the family on a road trip. Unfortunately, midway through the journey, a disgruntled artificial intelligence (A.I.) named Pal sparks a robotic uprising and gathers up everyone on Earth to take them into space.
The Mitchells, who narrowly avoided being captured, are now the last free humans left on Earth. With the aid of a few wounded robots, they must figure out a way to preserve humanity—and their family.
13. Blood Red Sky (2021)
Which type of aircraft would you least like to take over? Well, a plane with a vampire as a passenger is fairly high on the list. Yet that is precisely what occurs in Blood Red Sky, which according to Deadline is on track to become the most popular Netflix movie ever produced in Germany with over 50 million views worldwide.
Peri Baumeister plays Nadja, a freshly changed vampire traveling covertly in this fast-paced mashup of horror, sci-fi, and action. We find out who she is when the hijackers shoot her and leave her for dead, and the bad guys quickly wish they had taken Wesley Snipes as a passenger instead.
14. The Swarm (2020)
Bugs. Even though they are smaller than us, nothing terrifies us more. In his upcoming horror flick The Swarm, director Just Philippot plays on our predisposed fear of creepy, crawly, and hopping objects.
The widow Virginie, played by Suliane Brahim, tries and fails to support her family by breeding locusts. When she discovers that the insects have a craving for human blood, it gives her the opportunity to ultimately profit from them while also making them more dangerous.
When the inevitable happens, the movie “does for grasshoppers what Alfred Hitchcock did for birds,” as Richard Brody writes for The New Yorker.
15. Army of the Dead (2021)
What should you do if a zombie pandemic breaks out in Las Vegas? Naturally, you take advantage of the circumstance and rob one of the most prosperous casinos in the area.
In the zombie heist movie Army of the Dead, Dave Bautista’s Scott Ward and his band of mercenaries at least do that. According to the movie’s trailers, Ward and his team of mercenaries will require every bit of ammunition they possess.
The undead of Vegas (sounds like a band name) are not just faster, smarter, and a lot more organized than the shambling horrors that populate your typical zombie fiction. They also include Elvis Presley impersonators, Vegas showgirls, and Bengal tigers in their ranks.
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16. Oxygen (2021)
It would be terrible to wake up with no memory of who you are, wouldn’t you say? Imagine having amnesia as well as being mysteriously stuck in a cryogenic capsule that is progressively losing its air. The sci-fi drama Oxygen in French is based on the idea.
Mélanie Laurent portrays the protagonist who is imprisoned and has to figure out who she is and how to survive using only her suppressed memories and the recalcitrant computers in the pod. Beginning on May 12, Oxygen will be streamable. It has the potential to be a tense and cramped thriller.
17. Spectral (2016)
You’ll adore Spectral if you’re in the mood for some good old-fashioned alien combat. This early Netflix original demonstrates how inventive the studio could be on a tight budget despite having a lot of action-packed scenes. A war-torn European city is being terrorized by an extraterrestrial entity, requiring local engineers to work with American Special Ops to stop the invasion.
18. The Midnight Sky (2020)
The Midnight Sky is directed by and stars George Clooney. Scientist Augustine Lofthouse (George Clooney), who believes that humanity is on the verge of extinction, refuses to leave his lab in the Arctic when radiation levels on Earth reach dangerously high levels.
Instead, he decides to use the computer system in his lab to look for orbiting ships that have been sent on missions. Lofthouse finds a young girl in the lab and decides to use her as a messenger to alert the far-off crew of Aether of Earth’s imminent catastrophe.
Together, the two brave the Arctic conditions to travel to a radio tower that faces north and has the strength to alert Aether. The Midnight Sky is an effects-heavy sci-fi thriller that has elements of other near-apocalypse movies but places more emphasis on the performances, particularly Clooney’s. Although it’s not a perfect movie, it does an excellent job.
19. Outside the Wire (2021)
In 2036, the United States is supporting Russia during a civil war. The military is now accompanied in battle by “Gumps,” mechanical troops that work in every branch. Drone pilot Harp (Anthony Mackie) and android super-soldier Leo (Damson Idris) are assigned to battle in Ukraine as retribution for defying squad orders.
Together, the pair must take on Victor Koval, a terrorist intent to deploy missiles from the Cold War in battle. Outside the Wire is a sci-fi thriller that keeps you riveted to your seat from beginning to end. It is driven by two excellent lead performances.
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20. The Discovery (2017)
Thanks to the work of scientist Thomas Harbor, evidence of the afterlife is present in our time in a future version of the modern world (Robert Redford). As the news sweeps the globe, suicide rates skyrocket as people choose to start again rather than stay in difficult circumstances.
Will (Jason Segel), Harbor’s son, challenges his father’s academic credentials. On a ferry, Isla (Rooney Mara) and I are introduced; they talk about mortality and subsequently start dating.
The nature of Will’s father’s profession is revealed when he takes Isla to his father’s secret compound in ways that neither the father, son, nor Isla could have anticipated. The Discovery is a philosophical, wonder-filled movie with a compelling plot and standout performances, notably from Segel and Redford.
21. The Wandering Earth (2019)
The Wandering Earth was a major blockbuster in China, making it maybe the largest movie you’ve ever heard of. The expanding sun compels humanity to move the Earth to another solar system in the future when the movie is set.
Due to his lengthy space mission, Captain Wang Lei (Li Guangjie) would have to leave his son, Liu Qi (Qu Chuxiao), behind. However, in order to make sure that the Earth survives its risky journey, both the father and the son will have significant responsibilities to perform.
22. Mirage (2018)
When viewing Mirage, don’t be afraid to read the subtitles. This Spanish sci-fi movie offers a narrative that may be understood in any language. Vera Roy, played by Adriana Ugarte, unwittingly finds a way to contact a young man named Nico Lasarte (Joel Illescas) from 25 years ago.
After assisting Nico in avoiding his own unintentional demise, Vera learns that her own universe and history have undergone significant upheaval. Vera’s husband, David (Lvaro Morte), is wed to someone else, and Vera’s daughter is no longer alive. Vera then scrambles to find a means to get back what she lost.
23. Black Mirror: Bandersnatch (2018)
Nothing else on Netflix compares to Black Mirror: Bandersnatch in terms of quality. This British sci-fi anthology series offshoot features an interactive film that lets viewers and players decide Stefan Butler’s fate (Fionn Whitehead).
Young programmer Stefan had the opportunity to create a video game based on a “choose your own adventure” book in 1984. But as life imitates art, Stefan soon has to consider his own free will. It’s not possible to see the entirety of Bandersnatch’s video in one sitting.
As a result, it encourages repeat viewings by allowing different choices to reveal different storylines. Though it might not be the way all movies are made in the future, this is a subgenre worth investigating.
24. Advantageous (2015)
Despite not being a sci-fi blockbuster, Advantageous is thought-provoking. A single mother named Gwen Koh (Jacqueline Kim) will soon lose her work and her source of income.
Gwen signs up for a controversial experiment that would put her mind in a younger body out of a desperate need to support her daughter Jules (Samantha Kim). To the horror of Jules and even Gwen herself, Gwen 2.0 (Freya Adams) is a radically different woman from the original model.
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25. Project Power (2020)
Superheroes don’t exist, but their abilities do. That is the idea of the movie Project Power, which depicts a near-future society in which practically everyone can acquire superhuman abilities by taking a unique drug called Power. Power users have special skills that are bound to them exclusively for five minutes.
Joseph Gordon-character, Levitt’s New Orleans police investigator Frank Shaver, publicly used Power despite laws prohibiting it. Frank encounters Art (Jamie Foxx), a man who might have unforeseen connections to the creation of the drug while looking for the source of Power. This cautionary story offers a novel perspective on a well-known genre.
26. Bird Box (2018)
It makes sense if Bird Box makes you think of A Quiet Place. Both are science fiction horror films that feature creatures that interact with people on a sensory level. In this movie, the creatures have the power to drive everyone who sees them mad and filled with suicidal thoughts.
Thus, there are always blindfolds on to keep things at bay. Flashbacks show how Malorie Hayes handled the demise of her familiar existence as she struggles to survive in this terrifying new environment, which is portrayed by Sandra Bullock. Although not every moment works, Bird Box does have a few genuine frights.
27. See You Yesterday (2019)
Many science fiction movies have something significant to say about the present, and the premise of See You Yesterday seems all too relevant. The narrative centers on C.J. Walker (Eden Duncan-Smith), a brilliant revolutionary who was even a young adult. C.J. has developed practical time travel devices, and she intends to utilize them for a very specific purpose.
Calvin Walker (Brian “Stro” Bradley), her brother, was slain in a police incident. C.J. and her buddy Sebastian (Danté Crichlow) attempt to alter history in an effort to preserve Calvin. Naturally, difficulties arise.
28. Beyond Skyline (2017)
The long-awaited sequel to 2010’s Skyline is one of the few times when the second installment is far better than the first. This unabashedly pulpy alien invasion B-film illustrates what happens when humans are left defenseless against a more advanced extraterrestrial species.
When the aliens attack, Frank Grillo plays a cop at conflicts with his son. The father-son team, who are suddenly forced to flee for their life, travel at breakneck speed through underground tunnels to the radioactive devastation of Los Angeles, an alien ship, and a rebel human camp in Laos to stage a last-ditch defense.
Beyond Skyline is utterly insane, but if you want high-stakes action, ridiculous sci-fi clichés, and classic human vs. alien brutality, this is the movie for you.
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29. Okja (2017)
Although Bong Joon-ho won Best Director and Best Picture Oscars for Parasite, he was already producing outstanding films before that (Okja isn’t his only film on this list). In this moving sci-fi drama for Netflix, Okja, one of his most controversial movies, takes on the meat industry and capitalism in general.
The protagonist of the tale is Mija, a young South Korean girl who grew up in the mountains with her imaginary super-pig closest friend, Okja. Mija must rescue her best friend Okja after the multinational corporation Mirando Corporation kidnaps her and takes her to New York to start a brand-new meat business.
Okja is a sci-fi romp that takes aim at everyone from self-obsessed CEOs to fumbling, naive campaigners in a biting satire of the greed and grotesqueness of American food production.
30. Freaks (2019)
Freaks, one of the most lauded sci-fi movies in recent memory, centers on 7-year-old Chloe, who has lived her entire life completely cut off from the outside world in her home with her father, Henry (Emile Hirsch). Chloe has been warned by Henry that the outside world is a scary, perilous place, but as she grows older, she becomes too fascinated to stay inside.
As Chloe learns more about the world she lives in, the tension and mystery that permeate this character-driven film begin to slowly come to light. It’s a lesson on how to produce excellent science fiction on a tight budget.
31. I Am Mother (2019)
I Am Mother, a sci-fi thriller that was expertly constructed and wonderfully played, by director Grant Sputore, caused a lot of waves. The human race appears to be extinct in the distant future.
Mother, an android played by Rose Byrne, tries to bring humanity back to life as its main goal. But first, the mother practices raising the daughter (Clara Rugaard) and teaching her how to survive in this hostile environment.
The daughter, who has never met a human being before, is confronted by a woman (Hilary Swank) from the outside, shattering her perception of reality. I Am Mother then takes a decidedly sinister turn once the visitor is inside the bunker. Will anyone live long enough to witness the revelation of the truth?
32. A Clockwork Orange (1971)
The timeless film by Stanley Kubrick explores the illogical extremes of a society consumed with and exposed to violence all the time. Alexander DeLarge (Malcolm McDowell) is the leader of a band of unemployed brigands in a near-future Britain who spend their days attacking essentially anyone they like while listening to Beethoven.
However, because the state is keen to combat crime, when they apprehend Alex, they treat him to an intrusive operation meant to take away his agency and recondition all of his violent impulses.
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