Memoirs, graphic novels, manga, and nonfiction books often serve as the inspiration for successful science fiction pieces. With brilliant world-building and well-developed lore, these flicks provide fantasy aficionados with an unforgettable cinema experience. On the other hand, when standalone movies grow into sprawling franchises, it might be intimidating for viewers who just want something light and entertaining to round off their evening at home with the TV. With that being said, here are five science fiction horror movies for cinephiles to try this coming weekend.
Snowpiercer By Bong Joon-Ho (2013)
This unique film takes us on an action-packed journey on a locomotive transporting the planet’s last survivors. An artificially caused glaciation has brought about the end of the earth. From this point on, humanity has been confined to a premium carriage that travels through a hellish landscape of blizzards and snow. In this carriage, the lowest earners dwell in the last compartment, and the quality of life seems to improve as we travel ahead. Curtis, played by “Avengers” alum Chris Evans, learns more than he has bargained for as a revolt appears to be on the brink and is shocked to learn that agony seeps deep through the train’s compartments. The film covers topics like social division, inequality, and unjust allocation of commodities, and it does so in a way that both explores human behavior and clearly conceptualizes the proliferation of structural issues across the civilized world.
Ex-Machina By Alex Garland (2015)
The film features Caleb Smith, a computer genius, as he partakes in an experiment to establish whether or not a cyborg called Ava is sentient. The film is unsettlingly lifelike and packed with inventive technologies and metaphysical concerns. Ava is a cyborg developed by Nathan Bateman, the rich President of the corporation Caleb serves in, with talents that have surpassed major technologies present on the planet. Ava, who is obviously cognizant and determined to become more than Bateman’s mechanical hostage, leads herself and the audience on an exciting trip that will have you clinging to your couch. This film’s examination of human psychology and cognition from the perspective of its artificial protagonist is brilliant. Both screenwriters and audiences are fascinated by such subtleties, and I believe this movie travels an extra mile in conveying and addressing concerns about the conscience that will stay with you long after the final credits have rolled.
Upgrade By Leigh Whannell (2018)
Gray Trace struggles with unfathomable pain and an unrelenting need for retribution after a terrible robbery renders him bedridden and disabled. Trace, whose life has been turned upside down by the death of his spouse, takes a prototype implantation that contains ai technology without giving it any thought. Now that he’s hooked up to this thing dubbed STEM, he can do things no person could ever dream of, like have unfathomable stamina, speed, and dexterity. With expert direction, we accompany him on his mission of vengeance. Whereas the story and protagonists are somewhat clichéd, the film’s direction is intriguing, and the battle scenes are entertaining. If you’re a lover of science fiction and you want to relax with a movie that will have you thinking and talking afterward, this is the one for you. Unfortunately, it lacks depth in terms of its characters and themes. But don’t let this deter you from watching “Upgrade.”
Spiderhead By Joseph Kosinski (2022)
Recently premiered on Netflix, the movie starring “Extraction” star Chris Hemsworth is a fascinating insight into the complexities of human nature by using a different perspective. It also raises many difficult ethical considerations regarding conducting experiments on prison detainees whose main motivation for giving their assent was to avoid being executed. Such prisoners are injected with psychological medicines to make them feel emotions ranging from compassion to terror. One has the power to persuade someone to become infatuated with everyone they see, whereas the other has the opposite effect and makes its client fear simple things. The writing cleverly sets up the situation such that you can’t help but wonder what these big pharmaceuticals giant really desire.
Annihilation By Alex Garland (2018)
When a mysterious entity from some other realm begins consuming the ground on Earth, biologist Lena Double and an elite squad of specialists are sent to examine the trouble. What they find is a terrifyingly warped version of our planet. As they try to find the source of the mayhem, they are being ripped, torn, and dragged out one by one by mutated animals, and every killing is more unsettling than the previous. The movie has all the qualities I look for in a brilliant science fiction movie: interesting characters, beautiful imagery, and a fun, wacky storyline. Without giving anything away, I can say that this film is a triumphant fusion of the greatest elements of both jump scares and science fiction. It introduces amusing technical and ecological themes and provides gory and terrifying moments that’ll make the audience sleep with the lights on. The movie likewise packs an awesome ensemble featuring Natalie Portman, Oscar Isaac, Tessa Thompson, Gina Rodriguez, and more.
See more: Movies Like ‘Beau Is Afraid’ That You Should Watch