11. The Matrix
The Matrix is basically a movie about shooting things. Of course, there is more to it than that. This is the rare action flick that has the brain to match all the shooting. Listing anything here would spoil the plot, so I’ll just say that the universe the Wachowski Brothers made is amazing, realistic, mind-bending, and even funny sometimes. This movie makes you think. And brings up the question: “Is what I perceive to be real actually real?” Just as you think you’ve come up with some way to prove this is real, the movie brings up another point that disproves your previous theory.
Best Moment: The ending. Easily the most action-packed string of scenes in movie history.
Epic Scale: 9.5
This movie is alot of things, it’s a cult classic, it’s confusing, it has a cast you could count with one hand, it was made by one guy (Shane Curruth), and it had a budget of $7000. Wow. We’re off to a great start aren’t we? Unlike the other movies on this list, I can not suggest this movie to everyone. It is simply too slow-paced for most people. There are people who think is movie is terrible, and then there are people who think it is brilliant. I am obviously a member of the latter group. This film is extremely confusing, simply because you have no idea why these things are happening, or in what order. At it’s core, Primer is a story about time travel. Shane Curruth did a great job with the way they discover the time travel technology, which is by accident. It’s pretty realistic, as lots of modern convenencies like microwaves were discovered by accident as well. It’s ending leaves the fate of things unclear (like the rest of the movie), and is a fitting end to what is essentially the definition of a cult-classic, and the ultimate example of the genre ‘Thinking Man’s Sci-Fi.’
Best Moment: The mind-boggling ending. When first saw it, I said something along the the lines of- “What the what?”
Epic Scale: 8
9. The Road Warrior
Yes, I know the poster says Mad Max 2, but any Road Warrior fan worth his leather bondage gear should know that this film is actually a sequel to a movie called Mad Max. Because Mad Max 1 was never released in US, they had to come up with a new name, The Road Warrior. This is one strange movie, only two characters even have names! The ridicilous plot has leather-clad ‘Road-Warriors’ hunting and killing for gasoline. So they can drive around and look for more gasoline. That seems kinda pointless to me. Anyway, this film is worth watching for the awesome action scenes, and the laugh-out-loud cheesiness of the whole thing.
Best Moment: The awesome (and explosive) finale.
Epic Scale: 9
8. T2: Judgement Day
I’ll be back! When the original Terminator ended with a mostly airtight ending (except for the Kyle Reese paradox), people wondered what T2 was going to cover that wasn’t in original. After all, (Spoiler) T1 ended with the Terminator dying. But T2 took the always interesting ‘build on the backstory’ plot. Tying loose ends the original brought up. Showing how the Terminator was created almost makes this sequel a prequel! As a matter of fact, it serves as both! Only in Terminator do you get brain-bending time paradoxes like that! Anyway, in T2, Sarah Conner has been placed in an asylum, and her rebelious son, John Connor, is living with some other family. Still determened to kill John Connor, The robots of the future send a T1000 to go and kill John. T1000 looks alot less menacing than the walking tank Arnold…. I mean T800. The T1000, however, has the ability to morph into anyone, anything, and absorb bullets. Basically, you can’t kill him. So the humans of the future do what any intelligent (or insane) person would do. Send a T800 (Arnie) into the past to kill the T1000. Even though in the first movie, T800 killed a couple dozen people just to kill John’s mother, Sarah. If your mind hasn’t exploded yet, you should continue reading this list. If has exploded, contact a doctor immedietly and demand to watch the original Terminator right after he puts you’re brain back in. It will all make sense after that. Kinda.
Best Moment: When Sarah Connor infiltrates Miles Dyson’s house and tries to kill him. The emotion and moral level is pretty high, but it’s the shocking revelation of the way the Terminator is created, along with Miles destroying his entire Research Lab in order to save the future.
Epic Scale: 10
7. 2001: A Space Oddysey
To this day, no one can explain exactly what this movie means. Kubrick was smart in leaving the film open to interpritation by pretty much eliminating any dialouge, instead opting to use stunning effects and camera angles. This film also has one of the best villians (if you want to call him that, I honestly agree with him) of all time……HAL. The chess playing, uber-intelligent, and shockingly human robot is the highlight of this picture. He will make you laugh (simply because of his dry speech) while at the same time scare the living daylights out of you. At least, he did for me. Like I said before, 2001 is simply left to be interpreted by the audience. I, for example, think this movie is about the circle of life. My Dad, however, believes it’s about the creation of mankind. There is no way to prove either of these theories, nor is there any to disprove them! 2001 isn’t a movie, it’s an experience.
Best Moment: I really like the one scene where the intersteller space waitress walks in a complete 360 in the room. See above picture.
Epic Scale: 11
6. The Terminator
I love this movie. Even more than T2! Of course, that’s kind of obvious isn’t it? To me, Arnold seems more like a giant, shotgun-weilding, shades-wearing, homicidal robot than the friendly fatherly figure he portrays in T2. This film captures the suspenful feel in an amazing way, and the few characters are at their best here. The time paradoxes the film brings up are mind bending, and the action compliments the confusion perfectly. This film will change your prediction of the future in an instant, and the overal atmosphere is fantastic. My one complaint? The stop motion animation Terminator at the end is so cheesy, I laughed my head off. I like retro cheesiness as much as the next guy, but this is just going to far.
Best Moment: The car chase!
Epic Scale: 9
5. Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back
Darker, more ambitious, crazier set pieces, more adult, better, these are all things that Lucas tried to acheive with Empire Strikes Back. And, for the most part, he succeded. Hoth is still one of the best and most iconic planets in Star Wars history. Not to mention this movie introduced Yoda, Boba Fett, and Lando Calrissian! Empire Srikes Back focuses more on Darth Vader and Luke than the previous film, and builds on Han and Leia’s relationship. Basically, if you fused Star Wars with Blade Runner, you would get this.
Best Moment: The beautiful Cloud City is one of the best locals in series history and the scenes are masterfully played, and,of course, “I AM YOUR FATHER!!!”
Epic Scale: 11
The surprise entry on this list! While I’m sure there are some people who agree that Primer should be on here, I bet no one expected Gattaca! This movie is basically a murder mystery about a ‘naturally-born’ man in a world full of perfect people created with a computer. The computer-made people are now considered the ‘normal’ people and the natural people are considered the ‘lower class’ of people. Vincent Freeman (Ethan Hawke) is a natural human with a computer-made brother. Being a natural person, Vincent is subjected to prejudice and genetic discrimination. Therefore, he is only allowed basic jobs like being a janitor. This of course, contridicts with his dream of going into space. So, he comes up with a plan. The plan goes like this: Vincent will change his genetic makeup so looks like the brilliant scientist Jerome Marrow (Jude Law), then he will pose as this scientist to get into the Gattaca Research Centre so he can work there and go into space. Jerome is perfectly ok with this, after all, he is wheelchair-ridden (don’t worry, no one’s seen him since the accident) and prefers to stay in his lab, where he gives Vincent blood samples that Jerome must use to fool the daily blood tests. While working in the Gattaca Reasearch Centre, Vincent falls in love with Irene Cassani (Uma Thurman). But when a man is murdered in the Research Centre and Vincent is blamed for the crime, he must evade police so they don’t discover he is natural human. It’s a great film, and worth the $3 you can get it for at most stores.
Best Moment: The great scene where Jerome must throw himself out of his wheelchair, climb up a flight of stairs, and then pretend to be Vincent.
Epic Scale: 11
3. Star Wars Return Of The Jedi
Beware! There are tons of spoilers in this entry! Empire Strikes Back is certainly amazing, but it seemed more like Lucas was trying to prepare us for the awesomeness that is Return of the Jedi. Case in point: Han Solo is frozen in carbonite in Empire so that Luke and the gang can go to Jabba’s palace to save him in this one. See my point? Return of the Jedi also has the most set pieces and events. The Great Pit of Carkoon, Endor, The Battle Over Endor, Jabba’s Palace, the list goes on and on. Anyway, this final (chronologicaly) entry in the series ties up the whole thing in one big bow. Darth Vader is dead, the Emperor is dead, Han and Leia get married, Luke is left sad and alone……
Best Moment: Jabba’s palace. The Rancor still looks realistic even in this age of CGI wonder.
Epic Scale: 11
2. Starship Troopers
If you read my Top 11 Funniest Movies of All Time list, than you should know that I LOVE this movie! It is simply amazing. The thing is, not very many people liked this movie when it first came out. They said that the characters were propaganda stereotypes. After all, you have the brave and square-jawed hero, the childhood friend the hero falls in love with, the tough guy with a passion for the violin, you get the idea. But what went over a lot of reviewers heads was that they are supposed to be like that. Paul Verhoeven grew up in occupied Holland , so all he watched when he was a kid were propaganda films, so this is sort of his own take on it. This film would actually be pretty good even without all the humor! The story goes like this: In the future, the only way to be a citizen is to be a soldier, and so lots of soldiers come and enroll to fight the bugs of Klendathu.
Best Moment: When they have to protect the fort from waves apon waves of bugs.
Epic Scale: 11
1. Star Wars
You knew it was coming, didn’t you? The original, perfect, entry in the most popular Sci-Fi film series EVER. It was the film that popularized the Sci-Fi genre into what it is now. It proved that Sci-Fi could be a major genre and appeal to everyone, not just the nerds. Star Wars is Lucas’s masterpiece, it was canceled, decliened, post-poned, and it went way over it’s budget, but when it came out, it exploded into what is today the third most popular film series. Only beaten by Harry Potter and James Bond. Kind of shocking considering that, in it’s first showing to Steven Spielberg and Brian De Palma, De Palma asked George Lucas, “What’s all this Force **** about?” and “Where’s the blood when they shoot people?” The story goes like this: A Rebel ship is carrying secret plans of the Empire’s new weapon, the Death Star, a space station with the power to blow up entire planets! This plans show the Death Star’s one weakness, an exhaust port at the end of a long trench on the Death Star’s surface. However, the Empire captures the ship and tries to steal the plans. The Rebel princess, Leia, gives the plans to two robots (R2-D2 and C3PO), who escape on an (what else) escape pod. The land on a sandy planet called Tatooine and are sold to Luke Skywalker, who finds a secret message in R2. The message talks about Obi-Wan Kenobi and the plans. So Luke finds Obi-Wan and they sneak off on a smuggler’s (Han) ship. They try to go to Alderaan, but it’s been blown up by the Death Star. The Death Star spots them and captures them an a tractor beam, and they are stuck on the space station. They rescue Princess Leia while on the Death Star and escape to Yavin 4! Obi-Wan however, is killed by Darth Vader while on the Death Star. The Rebels climb into their ships and fly to the Death Star, but they are all killed except for a few fighters. Luke flies into the trench, drops a bomb in the exhaust port, and flies off as the Death Star Explodes! The End.
Best Moment: Really? After all that explaining, you still expect me write a Best Moment? Fine, everything. If you haven’t seen this movie, you are not yet considered human.
Epic Scale: 11