Photo: Freebase/Public domain

Total Nerd The Best Alien Movies Ever Made  

Jason
490 votes 48 voters 13.8k views 21 items Embed

List of the best extra-terrestrial and alien films ever made. Aliens remain one of the most persistent subjects for films, particularly in the horror and sci-fi genres. Though movie aliens take on a variety of different forms, powers and appearances, they are almost always depicted as inscrutable subjects of fascination for human characters, often leading to debates about their true purpose for visiting Earth and contacting humanity.

The majority of movies about aliens depict them as villains, displaying violent aggressive behavior and, often, with plots in mind to colonize the Earth or steal our valuable natural resources. H.G. Wells classic novel "War of the Worlds" (itself adapted numerous times for the screen) established the pattern of these stories: Aliens arrive on Earth, at first humans are uncertain how to react to them, and then an attack commences that the world's citizens must band together in order to prevent. ("Independence Day" is perhaps the modern example of a film sticking closest to this format, but movies as diverse as "Invasion of the Body Snatchers," "They Live" and even "The Day the Earth Stood Still" continue to stick relatively close to this basic model.) Many of these films, and indeed much of the science-fiction genre more generally, look to the possible human failings that led to a violent conflict, providing an opportunity for social commentary and even satire alongside the more recognizable genre elements. Oscar nominee "District 9" provides a clear example of a film using a traditional "genre" alien plot to look deeper at the controversial immigration issue.

This list contains the best alien and extra-terrestrial films ever made, from genres including comedy, drama, science-fiction, thriller and horror. Be sure to vote your favorites up to the top, and if you see a film that should be on here and isn't, add it below!

1
25 5
Ranker Video
Aliens Sigourney Weaver, Bill Paxton, Michael Biehn

The Best Goldie Hawn Movies Lady Gaga Fashion: All Lady Gaga Outfits

2
24 6
Ranker Video
Alien Sigourney Weaver, John Hurt, Ian Holm

3
24 7
Ranker Video
Independence Day Will Smith, Jeff Goldblum, Vivica A. Fox

4
23 8
Ranker Video
Star Wars Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill

5
20 6
Ranker Video
Close Encounters of the Third Kind Richard Dreyfuss, Teri Garr, Carl Weathers

6
18 6
Ranker Video
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Drew Barrymore, Erika Eleniak, Debra Winger

7
19 7
Ranker Video
Predator Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura, Carl Weathers

8
18 7
Ranker Video
Mars Attacks! Natalie Portman, Jack Nicholson, Sarah Jessica Parker

9
15 7
Ranker Video
The Day the Earth Stood Still Patricia Neal, Michael Rennie, Frances Bavier

10
16 9
Ranker Video
District 9 Sharlto Copley, Jed Brophy, Vanessa Haywood

11
15 9
Ranker Video
Men in Black Will Smith, Sylvester Stallone, Steven Spielberg

12
15 10
Ranker Video
Starship Troopers Neil Patrick Harris, Denise Richards, Amy Smart

13
12 8
Ranker Video
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Kirstie Alley, William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy

14
7 3
Star Wars Episode V: The Empir... is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Alien Movies Ever Made
oobug added Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill

15
14 12
Ranker Video
The Thing from Another World James Arness, Paul Frees, George Fenneman

16
11 12
Ranker Video
Galaxy Quest Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tim Allen

17
9 10
Ranker Video
Pitch Black Vin Diesel, Radha Mitchell, Keith David

18
9 10
Ranker Video
Dark City Jennifer Connelly, Kiefer Sutherland, Melissa George

19
9 11
Ranker Video
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Robert Duvall, Jeff Goldblum, Leonard Nimoy

20
6 11
Ranker Video
Repo Man Jimmy Buffett, Emilio Estevez, Harry Dean Stanton

21
6 11
Ranker Video
The Man Who Fell to Earth David Bowie, Rip Torn, Buck Henry