A decade may as well be an infinity in the world of movies. The amount of product that is released in that time frame is pretty voluminous when discussing cinema on the whole, so sometimes it's a good idea to narrow your focus to a smaller cosmos in the continuum. Strangely enough, we're about to embark on a journey that understands this concept extremely well, as we're about to go through a list of the ten best science fiction films of the past decade. Each film has made it onto this list for some very good, and, in some cases, reasons extremely important to the genre itself. But each film is, in its own way, a sci-fi classic in the making.
10. District 9
Some directors make such brilliant debuts that they have a hard time measuring up to, much less surpassing, those initial efforts. Director Neill Blomkamp's District 9 is definitely one of those sorts of films, as his Apartheid allegory involving an alien race that's been living among humans still stands as his best work yet. Not to pass any more judgement on Elysium and Chappie than we already have, but the unique presentation of a found footage thriller, mixed with a compelling performance by then unknown Sharlto Copley, made for intriguing viewing. However, the reason it stands out in a decade's worth of genre material is because it was able to take a socially conscious subject and, without pretension or hamfisted intent, made a viably entertaining film out of it.
Time travel is so hard to work with, considering it's a subject of such scrutinous continuity that you really need to know what you're doing to make it work. Director Rian Johnson, as per usual, knew what he was doing when he made Looper, and it shows in every frame of his third motion picture. Pitting Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis against each other in a time turning thriller, Johnson mashes film noir trappings and fast paced action to make a sci-fi film that both die-hard fans and those outside of the genre could get behind. Also, that ending still has us thinking in the years since its release.
Writer / Director Christopher Nolan has never been shy when it comes to high flying concepts, two films in his filmography stand out as sci-fi luminaries. One of them is, naturally, his ode to Kubrickian space travel, Interstellar. With the help of project consultant / theoretical physicist Kip Thorne, Nolan not only launched into one of the more accurate depictions of time dilation, black holes, and space travel without faster than light travel, but also spurred Thorne to make some new discoveries on the practical side of things. To craft a sci-fi film full of wonder and emotional depth is one thing, but to help influence real-life science in the process is something spectacular.
7. Edge of Tomorrow
John F. Kennedy once said that, "victory has a hundred fathers, and defeat is an orphan." Well, Edge of Tomorrow was certainly an orphan when it came to the box office expectations, but lucky for Tom Cruise and company, everyone loves an endearing orphan! Edge of Tomorrow, or Live. Die. Repeat. as some of you may have come to know it, blends a killer sense of humor and some top notch action with the sort of sci-fi premise that makes the film stand out. Perhaps the best reason for including this film in our line-up is the fact that its personality shone so bright, and it came so highly recommended, that it snatched victory from the jaws of defeat and even put itself on track for a sequel.