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The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s 

Ranker Film
Updated May 5, 2020 6.6k votes 751 voters 21.5k views 106 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite science fiction films that were released in the 1960s

The 1960s was an important decade in the development of the science fiction genre. Several major releases helped redefine sci-fi for a generation of movie-goers.


On this list of the greatest ‘60s sci-fi movies, you’ll find Stanley Kubrick’s opus
2001: A Space Odyssey. This film, with its minimalist dialogue and pioneering use of music and ambiguous imagery, remains one of the most iconic sci-fi movies of all time, and features one of the most iconic sci-fi “characters” of all time - the supercomputer Hal. Another classic sci-fi movie on this list is Planet of the Apes. Starring Charlton Heston, this movie has been parodied, referenced, and remade many times over the years. At the time, the special effects were considered revolutionary.


Fans of Godzilla will be happy to see several films featuring the green monster on this list of the best ‘60s sci-fi movies. In addition, this list features a film by legendary French New Wave director Francois Truffaut.
Fahrenheit 451, based on the novel of the same name, was Truffaut’s only English-language film. Vote up the best '60s 
sci-fi films below, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section. 
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list ordered by
1
Planet of the Apes is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Charlton Heston, Linda Harrison, James Whitmore

Released: 1968

Directed by: Franklin J. Schaffner

Planet of the Apes is a 1968 American science fiction film directed by Franklin J. Schaffner and starring Charlton Heston. Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans, James Whitmore, and James ...more

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2
2001: A Space Odyssey is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Arthur C. Clarke, Leonard Rossiter, Ed Bishop

Released: 1968

Directed by: Stanley Kubrick

2001: A Space Odyssey is a 1968 epic science fiction film produced and directed by Stanley Kubrick. The screenplay was written by Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke, and was partially inspired by ...more

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3
The Time Machine is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Yvette Mimieux, Rod Taylor, Alan Young

Released: 1960

Directed by: George Pal

The Time Machine – also known promotionally as H.G. Wells' The Time Machine – is a 1960 Metrocolor time travel science fiction film based on the 1895 novel of the same name by H. G. Wells in ...more

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4
Fantastic Voyage is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Raquel Welch, James Brolin, Donald Pleasence

Released: 1966

Directed by: Richard Fleischer

Per salvare la vita di un celebre scienziato, vittima di un attentato, alcuni medici si fanno miniaturizzare ed entrano nel suo corpo. Per arrivare al cervello e operarlo hanno solamente un'ora. ...more

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5
Fahrenheit 451 is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Julie Christie, Cyril Cusack, Oskar Werner

Released: 1966

Directed by: François Truffaut

Fahrenheit 451 is a 1966 British Dystopian science fiction drama film directed by François Truffaut and starring Oskar Werner, Julie Christie, and Cyril Cusack. Based on the 1953 novel of ...more

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6
Voyage to the Bottom of ... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Barbara Eden, Joan Fontaine, Peter Lorre

Released: 1961

Directed by: Irwin Allen

Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea is an American science fiction film, produced and directed by Irwin Allen, released by 20th Century Fox in 1961. The story was written by Irwin Allen and Charles ...more

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7
Mysterious Island is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Muttley Dastardly added Herbert Lom, Joan Greenwood, Nigel Green

Released: 1961

Directed by: Cy Endfield

Mysterious Island is a 1961 science fiction adventure film. Based very loosely upon the novel The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne, the film was produced by Charles H. Schneer and directed by Cy ...more

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8
The Last Man on Earth is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Vincent Price, Giacomo Rossi-Stuart, Umberto Raho

Released: 1964

Directed by: Sidney Salkow, Ubaldo Ragona

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial The Last Man on Earth is a 1964 science fiction horror film based on the Richard Matheson 1954 novel I Am Legend. The film was directed by Ubaldo Ragona and Sidney Salkow, and stars Vincent ...more

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9
Robinson Crusoe on Mars ... is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Adam West, Paul Mantee, Victor Lundin

Released: 1964

Directed by: Byron Haskin

Robinson Crusoe on Mars is a 1964 independently made color Techniscope science fiction film distributed by Paramount Pictures that was produced by Aubrey Schenck, directed by Byron Haskin, and ...more

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10
Village of the Damned is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
George Sanders, Barbara Shelley, Michael Gwynn

Released: 1960

Directed by: Wolf Rilla

Village of the Damned is a 1960 British science fiction film by German director Wolf Rilla. The film is adapted from the novel The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham. The lead role of Professor ...more

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11
First Men in the Moon is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Peter Finch, Martha Hyer, Lionel Jeffries

Released: 1964

Directed by: Nathan H. Juran

First Men in the Moon is a 1964 British science fiction film directed by Nathan Juran and starring Edward Judd, Martha Hyer and Lionel Jeffries. It is an adaptation by the noted science-fiction ...more

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12
Quatermass and the Pit ... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Julian Glover, Barbara Shelley, Andrew Keir

Released: 1967

Directed by: Roy Ward Baker

Quatermass and the Pit is a 1967 British science fiction horror film. Made by Hammer Film Productions it is a sequel to the earlier Hammer films The Quatermass Xperiment and Quatermass 2. Like ...more
13
The Absent-Minded Profes... is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Fred MacMurray, Keenan Wynn, Paul Frees

Released: 1961

Directed by: Robert Stevenson

The Absent-Minded Professor is a 1961 American film distributed by Walt Disney Productions based on the short story "A Situation of Gravity" by Samuel W. Taylor. The title character ...more

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14
The Day of the Triffids ... is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Howard Keel, Carole Ann Ford, Mervyn Johns

Released: 1962

Directed by: Freddie Francis, Steve Sekely

The Day of the Triffids is a 1962 British film based on the 1951 science fiction novel of the same name by John Wyndham. The picture was directed by Steve Sekely, and Howard Keel played the ...more

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15
The Nutty Professor is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Jerry Lewis, Stella Stevens, Henry Gibson

Released: 1963

Directed by: Jerry Lewis

The Nutty Professor is a 1963 American comic science fiction feature film produced, directed, co-written and starring Jerry Lewis. The score was composed by Walter Scharf. The film is a parody ...more

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16
Marooned is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Gene Hackman, Gregory Peck, Lee Grant

Released: 1969

Directed by: John Sturges

Marooned is a 1969 Eastmancolor American film directed by John Sturges and starring Gregory Peck, Richard Crenna, David Janssen, James Franciscus, and Gene Hackman. It was based on the 1964 ...more
17
Children of the Damned ... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
xacques added George Sanders, Ian Hendry, Barbara Shelley

Released: 1964

Directed by: Anton Leader

Children of the Damned is a 1964 science fiction film, a thematic sequel to the 1960 version of Village of the Damned. It is about a group of children, with similar psi-powers to those in the ...more
18
Mothra is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Takashi Shimura, Kyōko Kagawa, Akihiko Hirata

Released: 1961

Directed by: Ishirō Honda

Mothra is a 1961 kaiju/tokusatsu film from Toho Studios, directed by genre regular Ishirō Honda with special effects by Eiji Tsuburaya. It is the genre film debut of screenwriter Shinichi ...more
19
Barbarella is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Jane Fonda, Anita Pallenberg, Ugo Tognazzi

Released: 1968

Directed by: Roger Vadim

Barbarella is a 1968 French-Italian science fiction film based on Jean-Claude Forest's French Barbarella comics. The film stars Jane Fonda in the title role and was directed by Roger Vadim, who ...more

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20
Dr. Who and the Daleks ... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Peter Cushing, Roy Castle, Barrie Ingham

Released: 1965

Directed by: Gordon Flemyng

Dr. Who and the Daleks was the first of two Doctor Who films made by Amicus Productions in the 1960s. It was followed by Daleks – Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D. The film features Peter Cushing as Dr. ...more
21
Mysterious Island is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
xacques added Richard Crane, Gene Roth, Bernie Hamilton

Released: 1951

Directed by: Spencer Gordon Bennet

Mysterious Island is the 46th serial released by Columbia Pictures. It is an adaptation of the 1874 novel by Jules Verne, The Mysterious Island. As in the original story, which was a follow-up ...more
22
King Kong vs. Godzilla ... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Mie Hama, Akiko Wakabayashi, Akihiko Hirata

Released: 1962

Directed by: Ishirō Honda

King Kong vs. Godzilla is a 1962 crossover Japanese science fiction Kaiju film produced by Toho Studios. Directed by Ishirō Honda with visual effects by Eiji Tsuburaya, the film starred Tadao ...more

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23
Journey to the Far Side ... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Herbert Lom, Ian Hendry, Ed Bishop

Released: 1969

Directed by: Robert Parrish

Doppelgänger is a 1969 British science-fiction film directed by Robert Parrish and starring Roy Thinnes, Ian Hendry, Lynn Loring and Patrick Wymark. Outside Europe, it is known as Journey ...more

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24
The Day the Earth Caught... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Michael Caine, Leo McKern, Janet Munro

Released: 1961

Directed by: Val Guest

The Day the Earth Caught Fire is a British science fiction disaster film starring Edward Judd, Leo McKern and Janet Munro. It was directed by Val Guest and released in 1961, and is one of the ...more

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25
Charly is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1960s
Dick Van Patten, Cliff Robertson, Claire Bloom

Released: 1968

Directed by: Ralph Nelson

Charly is a 1968 American film directed by Ralph Nelson. The drama stars Cliff Robertson, Claire Bloom, Lilia Skala, Leon Janney and Dick Van Patten and tells the story of a intellectually ...more