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The Best First Contact Movies

Updated January 8, 2021 3.4k votes 696 voters 35.6k views59 items

List RulesMovies that show first contact with aliens only.

A list of the best first contact movies ever made, ranked by film fans' votes. This list is ordered by popularity, so only the greatest movies about first contact with aliens are at the top of the list. If there are any great films you think we missed, please feel free to add them yourself. 

The films on this list are the most famous first contact movies of all time, so use it to find some movies that you haven't seen already if you're a fan of films about first contact with aliens.


This list answers the questions, "What are the best first contact movies?" and "What is the greatest first contact with aliens movie of all time?" and contains everything from The Day the Earth Stood Still to Solaris.


Various bits of information are included with these popular Hercules movies, such as who directed them, when they were released and who starred in the films. So whether you're watching these movies on DVD, Blu-ray or streaming, these are some good first contact movies to enjoy.

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  • Arrival1
    256
    65

    Arrival

    Amy Adams, Forest Whitaker

    ReleasedNovember 11, 2016

    Directed byDenis Villeneuve

    Arrival is a 2016 American science fiction film directed by Denis Villeneuve and written by... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • Contact2
    283
    78

    Contact

    Matthew McConaughey, Jodie Foster

    Released1997

    Directed byRobert Zemeckis

    Contact is a 1997 American science fiction drama film directed by Robert Zemeckis. It is a... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind3
    167
    58

    Close Encounters of the Third Kind

    Richard Dreyfuss, Teri Garr

    Released1977

    Directed bySteven Spielberg

    Close Encounters of the Third Kind is a 1977 science fiction film, written and directed by... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • Alien4
    154
    53

    Alien

    Sigourney Weaver, John Hurt

    Released1979

    Directed byRidley Scott

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  • 2001: A Space Odyssey5
    146
    59

    2001: A Space Odyssey

    Arthur C. Clarke, Leonard Rossiter

    Released1968

    Directed byStanley Kubrick

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  • The Abyss6
    116
    38

    The Abyss

    Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio

    Released1989

    Directed byJames Cameron

    The Abyss is a 1989 American science fiction-adventure film written and directed by James... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • The Fourth Kind7
    93
    39

    The Fourth Kind

    Milla Jovovich, Elias Koteas

    Released2009

    Directed byOlatunde Osunsanmi

    The Fourth Kind is a 2009 American science fiction-horror film directed by Olatunde Osunsanmi,... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • Independence Day8
    128
    70

    Independence Day

    Will Smith, Jeff Goldblum

    Released1996

    Directed byRoland Emmerich

    Independence Day is a 1996 American science fiction disaster film co-written and directed by... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • District 99
    125
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    District 9

    Sharlto Copley, Jed Brophy

    Released2009

    Directed byNeill Blomkamp

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  • E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial10
    106
    54

    E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

    Drew Barrymore, Erika Eleniak

    Released1982

    Directed bySteven Spielberg

    E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is a 1982 American science fiction-family film co-produced and... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • Star Trek: First Contact11
    95
    53

    Star Trek: First Contact

    Patrick Stewart, James Cromwell

    Released1996

    Directed byJonathan Frakes

    Star Trek: First Contact is a 1996 American science fiction film released by Paramount... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • The Day the Earth Stood Still12
    80
    46

    The Day the Earth Stood Still

    Patricia Neal, Michael Rennie

    Released1951

    Directed byRobert Wise

    The Day the Earth Stood Still is a 1951 American black-and-white science fiction film from... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • Predator13
    87
    53

    Predator

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura

    Released1987

    Directed byJohn McTiernan

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  • The Man Who Fell to Earth14
    51
    33

    The Man Who Fell to Earth

    David Bowie, Rip Torn

    Released1976

    Directed byNicolas Roeg

    The Man Who Fell to Earth is a 1976 British science fiction film directed by Nicolas Roeg. The... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • The Arrival15
    57
    48

    The Arrival

    Charlie Sheen, Teri Polo

    Released1996

    Directed byDavid Twohy

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  • Super 816
    48
    45

    Super 8

    Elle Fanning, AJ Michalka

    Released2011

    Directed byJ.J. Abrams

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  • The Day the Earth Stood Still17
    50
    53

    The Day the Earth Stood Still

    Jennifer Connelly, Keanu Reeves

    Released2008

    Directed byScott Derrickson

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  • 201018
    33
    32

    2010

    Helen Mirren, John Lithgow

    Released1984

    Directed byPeter Hyams

    2010 is a 1984 American science fiction film written and directed by Peter Hyams. It is a... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • Cocoon19
    32
    31

    Cocoon

    Steve Guttenberg, Clint Howard

    Released1985

    Directed byRon Howard

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  • Mars Attacks!20
    47
    54

    Mars Attacks!

    Natalie Portman, Jack Nicholson

    Released1996

    Directed byTim Burton

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  • Communion21
    30
    33

    Communion

    Christopher Walken, Andreas Katsulas

    Released1989

    Directed byPhilippe Mora

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  • Europa Report22
    35
    47

    Europa Report

    Sharlto Copley, Embeth Davidtz

    Released2013

    Directed bySebastián Cordero

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  • Ender's Game23
    1
    0

    Ender's Game

    Harrison Ford, Ben Kingsley

    Released2013

    Directed byGavin Hood

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  • Alien 324
    1
    0

    Alien 3

    Sigourney Weaver, Charles Dance

    Released1992

    Directed byDavid Fincher

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  • Aliens25
    1
    0

    Aliens

    Sigourney Weaver, Bill Paxton

    Released1986

    Directed byJames Cameron

    Aliens is a 1986 American science-fiction action horror film written and directed by James... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button