For sci-fi lovers, watching a good alien movie is always a welcome activity. What makes a good alien movie is really simple. It must contain an intelligent being that is not from this planet and the setting must include Earth. It can’t just be a movie about another planet. The movie has to somehow relate to Earth.
If you’re in the mood for some good quality alien movies, we’ve compiled a list of the best ones ever made including new and old ones. You can binge watch them or you can simply choose one that you are most interested in.
These movies have great direction, excellent cast, and superior special effects. But the most important part is the story and the writing. A sci-fi is only a spectacle if it doesn’t have a good script. On other days, you may want to watch these football movies.
According to IMDB and a lot of film critics, Arrival is the number one alien movie of recent times. It was shown in 2016 and has gotten an average of 8 out of 10 rating. Without giving spoilers, the story starts when 12 mysterious spacecraft appear in different parts of the world. It follows the story of the linguistic professor Louise Banks who became part of the encounter by interpreting the language of the alien visitors. The movie is actually based on a book with the same title. It stars Amy Adams as Louise Banks, Jeremy Renner as Ian Donnelly who becomes her love interest. Other actors include Forest Whitaker, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Mark O’Brien among others.
Louise Banks leads an elite team of investigators to see about the 12 spaceships. The world is on the verge of a global war and the crew races against time to find a way to communicate with the aliens to know what they want. But it poses a risk to all mankind.
Considered a classic and released in 1979, Alien continues to be one of the best alien movies ever made. The story is set in the distant future where a crew of a commercial spaceship picks up an alarming call from a distant moon on their way home. They start investigating and the spaceship lands on the moon. 3 of their crew members leave the ship to explore the area and they soon discover a hive colony of some unknown species. The ship’s computer finds out that the message was a warning and not a call for help. Unfortunately, they disturb one of the eggs and they realize that they are not alone in the spaceship anymore and now they have to deal with the consequences.
This alien movie is in the horror and sci-fi genres. It was directed by Ridley Scott, starring Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, and John Hurt. Fans say that this is a classic tale of terror and one of the finest science fiction films ever made. The set is very realistic and it gives viewers the eerie feeling that the film has effectively created.
A great family alien movie is this Steven Spielberg classic, E.T. It’s the story of a troubled child who gathers the courage to help a friendly alien get out of Earth and go back to his homeworld. E.T. is the gentle alien who got stranded on our planet. He is discovered and befriended by a young boy named Elliott. The boy brought the alien to his home in California and introduces him to his brother and little sister. The kids decide to keep E.T. a secret, however, he soon becomes ill and the government must intervene in a dire situation. This movie stars the young Drew Barrymore.
If you don’t want to splurge on a high definition copy and you have a subscription with Amazon, and you can simply rent this good not-so-old alien movie called District 9. It’s about an alien race who were forced to live in the slums on Earth and make friends with a government agent who is exposed to their biotechnology. The story starts when a massive starship appeared in South Africa, carrying a bedraggled alien population called The Prawns. After 28 years, their location on earth deteriorated in a militarized ghetto called District 9. The aliens were confined and exploited and they were later forced to be evicted. In the operation, Wikus was exposed to an alien chemical and he would need the help of his alien friends.
What Makes a Good Alien Movie?
Just like any sci-fi film, a good alien movie must be believable. What are the situations that make an alien movie believable? What do they have to look like and what is a great interesting story?
There are a lot of alien movies where the aliens look a lot like humans. It’s a convenient arrangement and allows for the audience to sympathize with the aliens. We don’t really know what aliens look like and so it’s really possible to reinvent them as well. Some have tentacles and others were made more creatively.
Movies with alien visitations such as Close Encounters of the Third Kind, according to some critics are not as believable because of their appearance. However, the historical context makes it feel more real. A good alien movie must create an interesting story about the alien visitation and what their intentions are. It should also jibe with the accounts of those who claim to have encountered UFOs. Spielberg has studied ufology and knows a lot about the accounts of UFO witnesses and this is why he creates good alien movies.
If the aliens are portrayed as enemies, they must have a good motive for wanting to cause harm to Earth or to humans. Otherwise, it’s not a very interesting alien movie. The movie District 9 brings a different aspect of aliens because they somehow resemble minorities which offers insights on how societies mistreat them.
Filmmakers don’t really create alien movies to educate. It’s their way of telling a unique story of possibilities and a good alien movie explores these.