Although it’s not immediately obvious, you can find a wide range of excellent sci-fi movies on. Slide in absolute classics, from The Terminator to Invasion of the Body Snatchers, plus the . One of them is widely regarded as the best hidden sci-fi gem.
Scroll down for our top picks foron Prime Video, you can stream right now.
The Adjustment Office (2011)
Matt Damon and Emily Blunt star in this entertaining sci-fi romance based on a short story by Philip K. Dick. A member of the American Congress discovers that the events of his life are controlled by a mysterious organization. With a love interest by his side, he attempts to outwit and escape their control.
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The vivarium is interesting. It might frustrate a lot of viewers with its surreal aspects, but it’s still a compelling film. A young couple find themselves trapped in a labyrinthine suburban neighborhood of identical houses. As they attempt to escape, they find themselves caring for a mysterious baby.
This little-known sci-fi thriller takes its scientific aspects seriously, using a found-sequence format to dial in the realism. Europa Report tells the fictional story of a crew mission to Europa, a moon of Jupiter. Though crisis after crisis, the crew continues to be drawn into the mysteries of their destination, including the signs of life. Prepare to be sucked into a void of suspense, made all the more thrilling by Europa Report’s concern for plausibility.
This low-budget indie film has surprisingly high production values, impressive performances, and inventive camerawork to help tell the story of two teenagers in 1950s New Mexico. The resourceful duo track down potentially extraterrestrial origins of a mysterious audio frequency.
Screenshot Amazon Studios/YouTube/CNET
For those missing out on Black Mirror, this will go some way to filling that gap. Black Box follows a father who tries to put his life back together after a car accident. He agrees to an experimental procedure that takes him to the darkest recesses of his mind.
Vertical Entertainment/YouTube/CNET Screenshot
For well-made, thoughtful sci-fi that makes sure it doesn’t let its meditations exceed entertainment value, Archive is a loud cry. Gavin Rothery’s UK film debut stars Theo James as a scientist working to make an AI as human as possible. His reasons are hidden, personal and sure to put a spanner in the works. Drawing comparisons to Ex Machina, Archive is assured storytelling with a clever focus on character.
Oscilloscope Labs/YouTube/CNET Screenshot
Coherence doesn’t need an avatar-sized budget to create a compelling story. The low-budget indie film follows friends at a dinner party who begin to notice bizarre happenings after a comet passes by. Even more unsettling due to its grounded setting, Coherence nails the case for a true indie gem.
Alameda Entertainment/YouTube/CNET Screenshot
Intriguing premise? Check. Small budget? Check. Twist at the end? Check. This indie sci-fi mystery from Travis Milloy solidifies its place in Google’s search for “best indie sci-fi gems.” The complex story of Infinity Chamber centers on a man held in an automated detention center. He must fight superior technology to escape, an extremely tricky feat.
Beyond Two Infinite Minutes (2020)
How cool and intriguing is this title? Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes is a low-budget time travel comedy from Japanese filmmaker Junta Yamaguchi. The Crazy Premise: A cafe employee discovers that his television can show him what’s happening 2 minutes in the future. There’s obviously a lot more to it and the results are as creative and trippy as you’d expect under the constraints of indie cinema. A gem.
Just watched Prey and looking for another sci-fi movie featuring a heroic pup? Love and Monsters is aptly named, centering on Joel (Dylan O’Brien), a survivor in a post-apocalyptic world where mutated monsters roam the Earth. While searching for his ex-girlfriend Aimee (Jessica Henwick), he encounters a stray dog named “Boy”. That’s when the real romance begins. Catch this enjoyable monsterpocalypse adventure, which will surprise you with a few surprises and hit all the right emotional beats.
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There’s not much to say about the first in the Terminator franchise. Seemingly born out of a fever dream, James Cameron’s story introduces us to a cyborg assassin sent from the future to kill Sarah Connor, whose unborn son is destined to save humanity from the robotic apocalypse.
Photo credit: Jan Thijs
Before Dune, Denis Villeneuve directed another huge sci-fi classic. Arrival stars Amy Adams as a linguist who suffered a personal tragedy in the past. When mysterious alien spacecraft fly overhead, she is recruited to come into contact with completely unexpected, life-changing results. Arrival is a complete package, with performances, cinematography and writing that are… out of this world.
Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)
The second Star Trek movie in the rebooted franchise features a terrific adventure with a memorable villain in Benedict Cumberbatch’s Khan. The USS Enterprise gang travels to the forbidden zone of space to save an endangered species. Although a bit dated – a gratuitous underwear scene and a change of ethnicity for Khan – Into Darkness is an exuberant journey.
Amazon Prime Video
It’s hard to leave The Tomorrow War off this list, as it’s about Prime Video’s sci-fi big starring Chris Pratt. It follows a teacher who is drafted into a war with aliens – in the future. An easy to digest movie that you can watch while looking at your phone.
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This classic sci-fi film comes from John Woo, a Hong Kong director behind many notable action films, including A Better Tomorrow (1986), The Killer (1989), Hard Boiled (1992). Basically, if you haven’t seen Face/Off yet, know that it has 82 on Metacritic for good reason. Also, it stars John Travolta and Nicolas Cage.
Want some sci-fi comedy? Galaxy Quest is a cult classic, an affectionate parody of Star Trek. The clever premise: the cast of a fictional cult sci-fi TV series are drawn into a real interstellar conflict. Real aliens are involved, who believe the series is a documentary. A heartwarming comedy with a stellar cast, including Alan Rickman and Sigourney Weaver.
An ’80s techno thriller starring Matthew Broderick, WarGames won plenty of praise for its inventive concept paired with teen drama. A young hacker unwittingly gains access to an American military supercomputer, capable of executing a nuclear war with the Soviet Union. Oops! Well executed with entertaining results, WarGames is a smart sci-fi movie for everyone.
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