The OFCS Top 100 Sci-Fi Movies!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Scott Weinberg, Jun 6, 2002.

  1. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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    The Online Film Critic's Society recently voted for their Top 100 Sci-Fi flicks. 93 members sent in their Top 25 favorite science fiction films, and those ballots were then tabulated to come up with the top hundred.
    I know there are several hardcore sci-fi freaks (like me) around here, so I thought you guys would get a kick out of seeing what 93 movie critics consider the pinnacle of sci-fi.
    Me? I'm devastated that Flash Gordon didn't make the list. [​IMG]
    (Numbers in parentheses denote #1 votes.)
    THE OFCS TOP 100 SCI-FI LIST
    100. Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)
    99. Slaughterhouse Five (1973)
    98. Escape from New York (1981)
    97. Time After Time (1979)
    96. Andromeda Strain, The (1971)
    95. Highlander (1986)
    94. Rocky Horror Picture Show, The (1975)
    93. Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, The (1984)
    92. Men In Black (1997)
    91. Fantastic Planet (Planète sauvage, La) (1973)
    90. Until the End of the World (1991)
    89. Village of the Damned (1960)
    88. Starman (1984)
    87. Seconds (1966)
    86. THX 1138 (1970)
    85. Fahrenheit 451 (1966)
    84. Open Your Eyes (Abre los Ojos) (1997)
    83. Total Recall (1990)
    82. Silent Running (1971)
    81. On the Beach (1959)
    80. Invaders from Mars (1953)
    79. eXistenZ (1999)
    78. Time Bandits (1981)
    77. Akira (1988)
    76. Dawn of the Dead (1978)
    75. Dead Zone, The (1983)
    74. Star Trek: First Contact (1996)
    73. Fantastic Voyage (1966) (1)
    72. Cell, The (2000)
    71. Mad Max (1979)
    70. Sleeper (1973)
    69. Things to Come (1936)
    68. They Live (1988)
    67. Edward Scissorhands (1990)
    66. Quatermass and the Pit (a.k.a. Five Million Years To Earth) (1967)
    65. Strange Days (1995)
    64. Superman: The Movie (1978)
    63. Night of the Living Dead (1968)
    62. Starship Troopers (1997)
    61. Man Who Fell to Earth, The (1976)
    60. Them! (1954)
    59. Tron (1982)
    58. Thing From Another World, The (1951)
    57. Fifth Element, The (1997)
    56. Stalker (1979)
    55. Ghostbusters (1984)
    54. Trip to the Moon, A (Le Voyage dans la Lune) (1902)
    53. Altered States (1980) (1)
    52. Gattaca (1997)
    51. Invisible Man, The (1933)
    50. City of Lost Children, The (Cité des enfants perdus, La) (1995)
    49. Independence Day (1996)
    48. War of The Worlds, The (1953) (1)
    47. Jacob's Ladder (1990)
    46. Time Machine, The (1960)
    45. Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983)
    44. Fly, The (1986)
    43. Pi (1998)
    42. Videodrome (1983) (1)
    41. Truman Show, The (1998)
    40. Incredible Shrinking Man, The (1957) (1)
    39. Frankenstein (1931)
    38. Iron Giant, The (1999)
    37. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
    36. Donnie Darko (2001) (2)
    35. Dr. Strangelove (1964)
    34. Alphaville (1965) (1)
    33. Abyss, The (1989) (1)
    32. Forbidden Planet (1956)
    31. Robocop (1987)
    30. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982)
    29. Jurassic Park (1993) (1)
    28. Thing, The (1982)
    27. Road Warrior, The (1981)
    26. Solaris (1972)
    25. A.I.: Artificial Intelligence (2001) (1)
    24. La Jetee (1962) (2)
    23. Bride of Frankenstein (1935) (1)
    22. King Kong (1933) (1)
    21. 12 Monkeys (1995) (2)
    20. Contact (1997) (1)
    19. Dark City (1998) (1)
    18. Planet of the Apes (1968) (1)
    17. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1958)
    16. Terminator, The (1984)
    15. Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) (1)
    14. Day the Earth Stood Still, The (1951) (1)
    13. Back to the Future (3)
    12. Matrix, The (1999) (1)
    11. Aliens (1986)
    10. Alien (1979) (4)
    9. Clockwork Orange, A (1971) (5)
    8. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
    7. Brazil (1985) (5)
    6. Metropolis (1927) (3)
    5. E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial (1982) (3)
    4. Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980) (5)
    3. Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (1977) (7)
    2. Blade Runner (1982) (6)
    1. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) (24)
    Thoughts?
     
  2. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    Surprised to see a few of those films even considered sci-fi (E.T., Independence Day [the world weeps]?), but you gotta be lenient with Hollywood.

    I must say I am happy that Contact is at #20, even though I'd like to see it higher.

    Thanks for sharing that, Scott!

    Take care,
    Chuck
     
  3. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    Here's my disjointed ramblings...

    It's nice to see Iron Giant so high on the list.

    I've never seen Solaris - have to look that one up.

    Jacob's Ladder is considered SF? Interesting - the category seems a little broad for my tastes.

    What's Alphaville about?

    Altered States should be higher on the list.

    Tron? Sorry, no way that should be here.

    Finally, The Dead Zone - yes! Love that movie!
     
  4. Vickie_M

    Vickie_M Producer

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    Nice list, and many great movies! I've seen most of them, except:

    81. On the Beach (1959)
    77. Akira (1988)
    66. Quatermass and the Pit (a.k.a. Five Million Years To Earth) (1967)
    59. Tron (1982)
    56. Stalker (1979)
    54. Trip to the Moon, A (Le Voyage dans la Lune) (1902)
    47. Jacob's Ladder (1990)
    36. Donnie Darko (2001) (2)
    34. Alphaville (1965) (1)
    26. Solaris (1972)
    24. La Jetee (1962) (2)

    I've heard of all those except for On the Beach, Stalker and La Jetee. I'm going to look them up. Jacob's Ladder and Donnie Darko are highest on my kicking-myself-because-I-haven't-seen-them-yet list.

    I'm THRILLED that Fantastic Planet, Until the End of the World, Them!, The Cell, The Iron Giant and Village of the Damned (1960) were included. I would have included Children Of The Damned, which never gets any respect but is quite good.

    5 of my All-Time Favorite films are in the Top 12 (Matrix, A Clockwork Orange, Brazil, Star Wars: ANH and Blade Runner). The rest (of the Top 12) would probably make my top 50 except for Metropolis, which I respect, but have never been able to get into, and E.T., which I like, but would be pretty far down my own list. I have no problems with 2001 being #1. It's a breathtakingly brilliant film and I've seen it several times.
     
  5. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    I'm quite pleased to see Time After Time and Back to the Future on the list. I tend to take a broad view of science fiction and am certainly happy that it included Star Wars (I know some of you don't agree that it's sci-fi). But even I have a hard time considering some of those sci-fi, namely, Rocky Horror, Sleeper, Ghostbusters and Dr. Strangelove. Even though there are certain sci-fi elements (especially in Sleeper), those just don't seem like sci-fi to me. Still, a pretty nice list, although there's also some omissions in my mind (e.g., Logan's Run, Westworld, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea).
     
  6. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Sometimes it helps to be familiar with science fiction--especially in its written, literary form. With that in mind, here's a more credible Top Ten:

    10) Metropolis

    9) "Demon With a Glass Hand" (Harlan Ellison-scripted episode from the original Outer Limits)

    8) Alphaville

    7) Fahrenheit 451

    6) Blade Runner

    5) The Day the Earth Stood Still

    4) Solaris

    3) Forbidden Planet

    2) Zardoz

    1) 2001: A Space Odyssey

    Really, consult first those who know their SF.

    I am hard pressed to name twenty films that I feel even qualify as science fiction. Seriously. There is hardly any real science fiction committed to film.
     
  7. SteveGon

    SteveGon Executive Producer

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    That's an interesting list, if somewhat spotty - they're stretching with some of those choices. I agree with Jack, there are very few real science fiction movies. And that's a shame as there is a heck of a lot of good material out there. Now, does anyone know if David Fincher is still doing Rendezvous With Rama? I was excited when I first heard about it, but I've heard nothing lately. I hope it's still in production...
     
  8. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    I actually think the list is pretty solid, thought a little bit out of order for my taste. That's to be expected though.

    So Scott you are one of the onliners, right? I think Indy local Ed J-Ott is too. Is Pfieffer?


    I was pleased to see these films toward the top - Road Warrior, Body Snatchers, and POTA. I think Road Warrior is one of the 100 greatest films, period. Honestly. People remember it for it's surface images, but the visual direction of the film is fantastic and it offers everything that makes great SF.

    I think Blade Runner is one of the greatest and most important SF films ever, so I'm pleased with it's position. Being a big cyberpunk fan which is certainly the SF of this generation I think THE film to establish the genre should be high on the list.

    Glad to see Thing 82 higher than the original. I think Thing is Carpenter's best film by far, though I really love Halloween and Escape from NY too. Thing is another visually beautiful film that is highly efficient in it's narrative pacing while also maintaining great moments for establishing mood. 2 moments come to mind in this film - the fade to white when they tell Kurt that they are going up in the snowstorm and the bluish frozen face lit by the flare when he has broken back in. Oh and one of the great all-time endings for any film. It also contains real cognitive estrangement (a key aspect of SF) that makes you question trust for your fellow man. We are forced to question or agree with the various decisions of the group and think about what moral choices we would make in the same situation.

    I think Andromeda Strain should be higher I guess.

    I would put Scanners on above eXistenZ in regards to a Cronenberg entry. Of course he has 3 others on the list by my account so maybe neither Scanners nor eXistenZ needs to be on there.

    Regarding some of Vickie's misses - Akira, following in the Blade Runner/cyberpunk tradition this is an amazing anime film and certainly belongs high on a SF list.

    Voyage to the Moon is most notable for being copied for the Smashing Pumpkins video. You can get it in the 5 DVD set "Treasure of Early Cinema" that came out a few months ago. To see what a filmmaker was able to put on film so early in cinema is amazing, it stands up to modern SF simply for creativity.

    Donnie Darko is a great film that just hit DVD a few months ago, although knowing it's an SF picture before you see it does take away from it a bit. It's a very solid film, though placed a bit too high on this list. I assume this is due to it's currently popularity.

    Alphaville is available from Criterion and is this amazing creation from Godard. It's basically just a talking film that almost plays like film noir, so it doesn't offer the effects that people expect from SF. But it's still a great film by a master. Basically about a future detective.

    Tron. Well I think Tron 100% deserves it's status. First it was the first CGI film and actually used CG for a good reason. It's a film about going inside a computer and stands tall simply for the amazing look and tone it creates. I remain as captivated by the look inside the computer as I ever was, incredibly beautiful to look at. The SE DVD has a great picture to it.
     
  9. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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  10. Tim RH

    Tim RH Second Unit

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    I think it's a pretty good list. Here's my Top 10 fave sci-fiers:

    01. The [original] STAR WARS trilogy (1977, 1980, 1983)
    02. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
    03. Blade Runner: The Director's Cut (1982/92)
    04. Metropolis (1927)
    05. The Matrix (1999)
    06. Alien/s (1979, 1986)
    07. Planet of the Apes (1968)
    08. The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)
    09. The Terminator/T2 (1984, 1991)
    10. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)

    RUNNERS-UP:
    The Abyss, A.I. Artificial Intelligence, A Clockwork Orange, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, Forbidden Planet, Frankenstein (1931), Jurassic Park, RoboCop, Things to Come, The Time Machine (1960)
     
  11. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Jack,
    I know we disagree on what is or isn't sci-fi, but this statement really puzzles me. What has written sci-fi to do with films as sci-fi? I was reading Asimov and Heinlein and Clarke and Bradbury, etc. in elementary school long before I saw any sci-fi films, and long before Star Wars came out, and I still read and awful lot and wide variety of sci-fi literature, and I still think that Star Wars is a great film and is science fiction and I still think calling Alphaville science fiction is a real stretch. I won't even go there though, cause this is an old debate that I don't want to rehash here. I'm just curious about your statement above.
    On the other hand, I do agree with you about the deserved high placement of films like Metropolis, Blade Runner, and 2001.
     
  12. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    Actually, where the HELL is The Ice Pirates? I expected it would be number 1 (yes, over 2001 :p) ), and I find it NOT ON THE LIST?!?
    It's a sham, Scott. Write your peeps and tell them to fix it.
    Jokes aside, there IS more Sci-Fi in The Ice Pirates than in many of those movies listed. Just a thought.
    Take care,
    Chuck
     
  13. MartinTeller

    MartinTeller Screenwriter

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  14. Brian Kaz

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    Ghostbusters is on the list but no Ghost in the Shell?

    Nice to see Donnie Darko on the list, but I'm not too sure about Blade Runner being ranked higher than Star Wars. While both are important films, Star Wars did more than influence, it changed the experience of watching movies. I do agree with Seth regarding Scanners over eXistenZ.
     
  15. Quentin

    Quentin Cinematographer

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    Absolutely, Seth. All of those films belong on the list LONG before some of the films that are barely even considered as Sci-Fi.
    I understand what you're saying Jack, but I think you're being far too hard lined.
    This is a pretty decent list. Maybe one of the best "Best 100" I've ever seen (despite the faults pointed out).
    And, Jack..."Zardoz"?? Please...[​IMG]
     
  16. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Why not? It works brilliantly and is science fiction.
     
  17. Walter Kittel

    Walter Kittel Producer

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    As always with these sort of lists, is the criteria best SF?, best film that happens to be SF oriented?, or some combination of those two factors? ( I suspect the latter given the makeup of the list. )
    I have to agree with Jack on the subject of Zardoz. My surprise at its exclusion is tempered by the realization that this film is obscure ( compared to some of the selections. ) I consider it an oversight; as Jack has posited - It works brilliantly and is definitely the real deal when it comes to SF.
    Reading through the other posts, I tend to agree with Seth's assessments. Certainly Scanners is a deserving choice that I would favor over ExistenZ.
    - Walter.
     
  18. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    MartinTeller

    Can you tell me where I might find this Short 2 DVD as I have no idea what this is. Could it be on the 12 Monkeys DVD

    Thanks
     
  19. MartinTeller

    MartinTeller Screenwriter

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  20. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    MartinTeller
    Fantastic, thanks for the link and pick this up at some point.
    Oscar Merkx
    [​IMG]
     

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