Over the past few years, it’s gotten a little bit more common to see science fiction films nominated for best picture. While a sci-fi film has yet to win best picture, it is no longer as much of a shock to see a science fiction film nominated. At least not as much as it is to see a horror film nominated.
That said, it’s still an uphill fight. Here are 10 science fiction films that I feel could and should have been nominated for best picture:
- Metropolis (1927)
Fritz Lang’s expressionistic silent epic remains one of the most influential films of all time. Metropolis was eligible to be nominated during the first year of the Oscars, a year in which not one but two awards for best picture were handed out. That Metropolis was nominated for neither Best Production nor Unique and Artistic Picture was a huge missed opportunity.
2. The War of the Worlds (1953)
This film may be over 60 years old but it’s still one of the best alien invasion films ever made. And yes, I prefer the original to the Spielberg version.
3. The Time Machine (1960)
Morlocks, Eloi, and war … oh my!
“A planet where apes evolved from man?” No, not quite. “YOU BLEW IT UP! GODDAMN YOU TO HELL!” Yes, that’s better. Today, Planet of the Apes may seem more than a little bit campy but it’s still an unusually intelligent social satire. Charlton Heston’s persona has never been better used.
5. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
Can you believe that this classic from Stanley Kubrick was not nominated? Kubrick got a directing nomination but, when it came to picking the best films of the year, the Academy nominated Oliver! and Rachel, Rachel.
6. Blade Runner (1982)
Blade Runner is today recognized as a classic but it originally received mixed reviews and was ignored by the Academy. At the very least, Rutger Hauer deserved a nomination.
This underrated clone drama was sadly overlooked. Andrew Garfield’s performance is heartbreaking.
This enigmatic film was probably too bizarre and unsettling for the Academy but Jonathan Glazer’s direction and Scarlett Johansson’s performance make Under the Skin a classic.
Whenever I rewatch Guardians of the Galaxy, I’m happy to discover that it still holds up as a wonderful piece of entertainment. It remains my favorite film of 2014.
Quite simply an amazing film, this is a Metropolis for the 21st Century.