10. The Matrix
Released in 1999, The Matrix is set in a dystopian future in which sentient machines have become the dominant species and subdued the human population through the use of an artificial simulated reality called “The Matrix”. A computer programmer named Neo learns the truth and is enrolled in a rebellion; he learns to manipulate the program in order to combat the hosts and so begins his quest to save humanity. The film was released just as the internet became something of a household necessity and presents fears that technology is changing society for the worse, fears that are still present to this day.
The first superhero and rather fittingly what is now known as the first superhero movie, Superman was released in 1978 and is still a sort of template for the superhero movie now. Sent to earth as a baby after the destruction of his home planet Kyrpton, Clark Kent is found and adopted by a kindly couple who weren’t able to have children of their own. Thanks to their wholesome values and his alien superpowers he grows up to become Superman, the world’s first superhero. Today’s box office owes a huge amount to this movie as more and more of these movies are released every year.
The first and only animated film on the list, WALL-E is a Pixar film that presents a worryingly possible future in which the earth has been utterly ruined thanks to the exhaustion of resources and pollution caused by large corporations. Mankind now lives on a space station in which everyone floats around on space age mobility chairs getting incredibly fat. WALL-E is a small and lovable trash compacting robot left on earth, one day he finds a plant, the first there in years that signifies a possible hope for future of earth and humans alike. This film is possibly the most poignant on the list as far as current issues go.
7. Terminator 2: Judgement Day
James Cameron’s Sci-fi action film released in 1991 is as its title suggests the second film in the Terminator franchise and what is now considered by many as the last good entry in it. This film showed a change in dynamic from the first film in which Arnold Schwarzenegger played the title role and villain. This time he was the hero, having been reprogrammed to protect John Connor from another robot hell bent on killing him. Not only does this film have all the action any fan could hope for but it has heart, humour and even a few tears.
6. Back to the Future
No time travel film is more fun than Robert Zemeckis’ Back to the Future released in 1985. The first part of a now beloved trilogy, Back to the Future is about a teenager named Marty McFly who, whilst helping out is friend, a scientist named Doc Brown, accidentally travels back in time to the year 1955. There he meets his parents, though his arrival begins to alter the course of history and if he doesn’t make sure they fall for each other he’ll never be born. It’s a charming and fun film that also contains some great time travel conundrums, what’s not to love?