I heard a vicious rumor that top-10 or top-100 lists draw the most hits on blogs, so I figured I should test this theory out. It has been funny to see how, in a writing blog, it is not the posts on writing that generally draw the most views and comments, but rather unrelated posts, such as my one last week about food. Perhaps I need to find a way to write more entertaining posts about writing.
Anyhow, I thought I would start my top-10 experiment with an easy one -- my choices for the top ten science fiction movies of all time. You will notice that there are few old ones here, as my taste is rather limited in regards to older films. There are also some I won't list that I see on other top lists, because I don't consider them to be sci-fi.
1. Blade Runner -- Hands-down the best science fiction movie of all time, in my opinion. The soundtrack by Vangelis is the most beautiful soundtrack I have ever encountered. There has been a lot of fighting amongst fans over which versions of this film are the 'good' versions, primarily because some fans hate the Harrison Ford voice-over that was added to the theatrical release. I have to say that I enjoy all the versions. I love the movie without the narration, but I also think it is really good with it. The hard-bitten, world-weary sound of Ford's voice only adds to the noirish quality of the movie, at least for me. Each and every scene in this movie resonates deeply with me, and I cannot imagine any greater beauty ever being brought to the screen.
2. and 3. Alien and Aliens -- What a duo of fantastic sci-fi movies, and each so different from the other! Alien (directed by Ridley Scott, who also did Blade Runner) provides a realistic-seeming take on a deep-space ship stopping at a planet due to a distress signal. This movie is the very essence of tension and suspense. Aliens gave us heart-thumping action as space marines return to the lost colony to try to reclaim it. Supposedly they are there to rescue any survivors, but in reality they are there for very different reasons...
4. Serenity - Truth be told, I prefer the television series Firefly, as it goes into far more depth with the characters and story lines. However, a movie has limits on how long it can be, and they still did a fine job of bringing some terrific space-cowboy action. I recommend checking out this film, and then running as fast as you can to your PC to order Firefly!
5. The Road Warrior - Mel Gibson is perfect as Max in this post-Apocalyptic film that sort of but not really follows the not-so-great Mad Max movie. Maybe it's a male thing, but I always enjoy well-done survival of the fittest movies like this. Having to scrounge amongst the waste just to survive wouldn't be fun in real life, but it sure is in a movie.
6. and 7. Star Wars episodes V and IV - No need to link to these, as everyone has seen them, right? Episode V, called The Empire Strikes Back, was the best written of all these films, while episode IV was the original that started it all, and it does still have that magic. There's not a whole lot to say about these, as everyone knows them too well!
8. Back to the Future - I suppose this one is only borderline sci-fi, though it certainly has the right elements mixed in with the more contemporary stuff. This movie is simply a lot of fun, and very cleverly done. The cast couldn't have been chosen any better. The follow up movies were not nearly as good, but still fun.
9. ET - I won't link this one either. Who hasn't seen it? Steven Spielberg has a deft touch for these types of movies. He adds loads of realistic little touches and details to his films that really make them work. As a kid, I loved the D&D parts and also the Halloween stuff. Young Drew Barrymore stole the movie, in my opinion, with her adorably funny scenes.
10. Hardware - I couldn't resist putting this little known movie here. It is a very well done Australian low-budget flick that is a little like a scarier version of The Terminator, only funner. A scavenger in a post-Apocalyptic world picks up the remnants of a destroyed machine out in the war zone, thinking the scraps might make his artist girlfriend happy. She loves it and begins using the parts in one of her metal sculptures. However, the scrap turns out to have been an advanced type of new war machine, and once it can get access to electricity, it can piece itself back together. And it sees everyone as a threat. I love the dirty pig of a next door neighbor!
I couldn't end things without naming some others I really like: Brazil, The Matrix, The Terminator (1 and 2), Children of Men. I didn't bother with cartoons, or I might have added Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, and I also left off zombie films and such, as they don't seem like sci-fi to me.
What favorites of yours did I leave off?