While the 90s saw the advent of great science fiction films such as The matrix, Independence Day, Jurassic Park, and Men in black, it’s not the only decade exploring the wonders of futuristic or even downright bizarre science concepts. In fact, the 1980s had their fair share of sci-fi films that captured the love of mainstream audiences – such as Aliens, AND the alien, and even Blade runner.
However, for most media of any genre and time period, there are bound to be underrated works that deserve any superfan’s attention. And when it comes to Sci-fi movies Since the 1980s, there are a few must-have watches for any die-hard sci-fi fan.
9 Warning sign (1985)
When a virus outbreak occurs in a movie, it doesn’t automatically mean it’s a zombie movie. And Warning sign Carefully draw the line between sci-fi horror and the zombie movie. In Warning sign, a virus outbreak occurs in a top secret military laboratory operating as a manufacturer of pesticides. According to the protocol, someone activates Protocol One, which shuts down the installation from the rest of the world. Trapped and dead-end, the remaining scientists and crew inside the lab must find a way out before the virus turns them into rage-filled killers.
While Warning sign failing to boast the typical philosophical underpinnings of society’s usual trope under a zombie plague, the film makes up for it with sheer campy epidemic terror. The film mixes just the right amount of predictability, action, and thrill to refresh any sci-fi fan after the jaw-dropping recent flick they watched.
8 Vital Force (1985)
What if there was a possibility that vampires would become the subject of a sci-fi movie? Life force makes that possible, especially with its base “Space Vampires”, a 1976 novel by Colin Wilson. Essentially, Life force depicts a series of events involving three animated suspended humanoids brought to Earth after space shuttle astronauts discovered them from a ship. What ensues is utter chaos, as the humanoids are revealed to be vampire-like creatures who feed off the life force of those around them.
Despite its box office failure status, Life force has gained enough cult following to be considered a staple – especially for fans of sci-fi. While he lacks the usual qualities associated with science fiction, such as in-depth use of concepts or social commentary, Life force has just enough fear and thrill to become a breath of fresh air from the vampire media formula.
seven Cocoon (1985)
Sometimes science fiction touches less on science and more on wonders to dwell on the realm of fantasy drama as well, and that’s where Cocoon lies. This 1985 film depicts the events surrounding a mysterious Florida nursing home, in which its swimming pool appears to have a rejuvenating quality. As it turns out, this new fountain of youth has another purpose, and residents drawn to it get involved in its affairs.
Despite the disturbing setting, Cocoon has the most relaxed, peaceful take in science fiction. Cocoon proves that science fiction doesn’t have to be sorry, depressing, or desperate to be interesting. In his heart, Cocoon tackles the subject of mortality in humans with such a warm, benevolent grace that makes it a nice detour from typical sci-fi movies.
6 The Last Starfighter (1984)
At first glance, The last star hunter may appear to be a Star wars imitation. However, The last star hunter is a space opera that takes what made Star warss a hit and adds its own mark of lightness into the mix. Located on Earth at the present time, Alex Rogan has devoted much of his time to completing the arcade game “Starfighter”. To his surprise, his success in the game caught the attention of Centauri, an alien who kidnaps Alex to enlist him as part of the conflict between the Ko-Dan Empire and the Rylan Star League.
Unlike other space operas, The last star hunter was as fantastic as it gets. While the likes of Star wars focuses more on establishing the viewer’s relationship to the story on a smooth tempo, The last star hunter goes straight to action in a consistent manner. Despite its predictable plot, The last star hunter remains an entertaining tale that highlights hope against all odds.
5 TRON (1982)
A few years before The Terminator franchise even introduced the idea of a malicious artificial intelligence, it was Disney TRON who alluded to the concept. At its core, the story explores the adventures of software engineer Kevin Flynn and his adventures after being “transported” to the cyberworld within the ENCOM company, where he teams up with the Tron program to stop the tyranny of the Master Control Program, ENCOM’s mainframe system has gone haywire.
Next to The last Starfighter, it is also TRON which was one of the first films to announce the use of heavy CGIs for its backdrop and scenes. And given TRONThe emphasis on the bizarre world of cyberspace, such a focus on technology is warranted. Interestingly, aside from its Disney formula of equal blends of action and drama, sci-fi fans may well consider TRON as the first mainstream adaptation of the “trapped in a virtual world” trope.
Fans of the hit 2001: A Space Odyssey will probably remember that he actually had a sequel, 2010: The year we made contact, released in 1984. Based on the Arthur C. Clarke sequel novel for “2001: A Space Odyssey” titled “2010: Odyssey 2”, the film follows the journey of an expedition sent to Jupiter to find out exactly what that happened to the missing “” Discovery “during the events of the first film.
Admittedly, the film didn’t have much of an impact compared to its predecessor. However, 2010: The year we made contact has remained a staple when it comes to expanded sci-fi concepts. Although its ending is a bit disappointing, the decision to take an approach more grounded in the most fantastic concepts of 2001 is proof that sometimes reality is more mundane than you might think – something not always explored in science fiction concepts.
3 The Quiet Land (1985)
When it comes to disaster movies, sometimes it’s not the abundance of human panic that causes sheer terror. Like The Quiet Land proves it, sometimes the best disaster films shine by showing what happens in the total absence of people. In his heart, The Quiet Land tells the story of scientist Zac Hobson as he wakes up in a deserted town – with no one but himself, and with everyone seemingly gone. As he finally meets the survivors Joanne and Api, problems soon arise within them.
Loosely based on the 1981 science fiction novel of the same name, The Quiet Land emphasizes how dangerous any person can be when left on their own, regardless of the consequences. This film is a fairly unique take on the disaster and post-apocalyptic genre, as it’s not often that such films explore the intricacies of human interaction without the backdrop of impending doom.
2 Altered States (1980)
Many sci-fi tales describe the horrors of experiences gone awry, with morality usually involving controlling one’s pride. Modified states tries to go this route, with the 1980 film turning to a more grounded and plausible storyline for maximum effect. Modified states tells the story of Edward Jessup, a psychology professor who has just decided to combine his experiences of sensory deprivation with hallucinogens. Jessup’s goal is to prove that sensory deprivation with hallucinogens can help him unlock altered states of consciousness – and with each step towards this process, the more he loses his grip on reality.
Despite being an adaptation of a novel and screenplay by Paddy Chayefsky, what perhaps makes this sci-fi film a staple is its real inspiration: the neuroscientist John’s own research. C. Lilly on sensory deprivation who also use hallucinogens.
1 1984 (1984)
Any sci-fi fan would most likely mention George Orwell 1984 whenever someone opens the topic of “best” in the genre. However, not everyone knows the 1984 film adaptation released the same year, which in itself was perhaps the best adaptation of the novel. Like the novel, 1984 takes place in a dystopian version of the same year, where civil servant Winston Smith faces the gruesome reality of a society that continually persecutes individualism.
As well as being able to score accolades, the film itself had a remarkable impact upon its release. Remember to see The matrix for the first time in 1999, just like when its characters reveal that its twenty-first century setting is only an illusion. It is the same with the 1984 adaptation, this time highlighting the sheer horrors of a totalitarian society if humanity had taken a wrong turn in the past.
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