Recommend good Sci Fi/Fantasy movies. Challenge: I've seem them all already.

We’re in the mood for some good fantasy and/or sci-fi, and I’ve been having a heck of a time finding decent ones. Problem is, Mr. Athena and I both love the genre, and as a result, we’ve seen a LOT of them. Still, I know there’s enough out there that I haven’t seen.

Here’s what we like:

Lord of the Rings (duh)

Anything Dragon-y.

Campy is OK, as long as it’s GOOD campy. We’re loving “Legend of the Seeker” but unfortunately it only comes on once a week for an hour. If they’d make a “Legend of the Seeker” channel, we’d subscribe.

We loved the new Star Trek movie.
What we DON’T like:

We rented Beowulf last night, and turned it off after 20 minutes. It seemed too much like watching a video game.

300 was on the edge for me. Too much fighting, not enough real plot.

Things can definitely get too stupid/campy. There has to be at least a bit of plot that I haven’t seen ten thousand times before.

So there you have it. Older movies are fine; we loved movies like First Knight and Dragonheart and would happily watch older movies if we haven’t seen them. Foreign is good, too.

Good SF movies:


Forbidden Planet

The Day the Earth Stood Still** (the original)




Terminator 2

The Abyss


Panic in Year Zero

It! The Terror from Beyond Space

Robinson Crusoe on Mars

The Quatermass Trilogy(The Creeping Unknown, Quatermass II/Enemy from Space, Quatermass and the Pit/20 Million Years to Earth) ** ignore subsequent offerings

**Destination Moon

The Matrix

The Lost Missile

Enemy Mine

Metropolis** (Restored version, or the Moroder version)

**the Andromeda Strain

The Terminal Man

The Thing**(both versions)**


That’ll do for now

In the Camp camp, try World Gone Wild and Ice Pirates.

You’ve certainly seen some of these, but probably not all.

Mostly harder sci-fi vs. fantasy though.

City of Ember
The Abyss
The Postman
Deep Impact
Red Planet
Mission to Mars
Body Snatchers (78 and 93)
A Boy and His Dog
Silent Running
Vanilla sky
Outland (connery 81)
The Hidden (87)
Robinson Crusoe On Mars
Journey to the Far Side of the Sun
This Island Earth

I tried not to duplicate recommendations.

I find it quite funny and ironic that CalMeachem didn’t include this one on his list.

Most of your likes are in the fantasy genre, so I don’t know how much my suggestions would help. All I could think of off the top of my head was time travel related:

12 Monkeys

Time Crimes


I also second just about everything on CalMeachem’s list, and suggest that if you liked 2001, you would probably like the original Solaris.

Ladyhawkeis a great fantasy movie, and perhaps old enough you haven’t seen it.

A lot of my favorites have already been mentioned. Not sure how old you are, which might help in determining things you might’ve missed due to your age.

All I can recommend is mostly Sci-Fi:

Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
Alien (1979)
Blade Runner (1982)
Back to the Future (1985)
Explorers (1985)
Aliens (1986)
The Fly (1986)
Predator (1987)
The Time Machine (both 1960 and 2002; you might like the newer one since you like a little campy fantasy… this one has that flavor)
War of the Worlds (both 1953 and 2005)
Sunshine (2007)
Moon (2009)
District 9 (2009)

Also, no one’s really seen it yet, but check out Avatar when it hits the screen on the 18th. It looks like a perfect blend of scifi and fantasy.

Have you seen The 13th Warrior?

This was the first thing I thought of.

Also fantasy: Jim Henson’s Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal, and The Storyteller TV series.

There’s a reason for that – I don’t particularly care for it. It’s got some gorgeous shots, but the movie’s brain-dead, which is quite a come-down when you consider that the original short stories it was based on were pretty damned good (the fix-up book kind of peters out, though). I wouldn’t mind seeing it remade.
I’ll add a few recent flicks that were pretty good:
**The 13th Floor

The Last Mimzy** (the last two based on works by Catherine L. Moore, one with her husband Henry Kuttner)
I found both versions of Solaris profoundly boring. I don’t think it follows that if you love 2001 you’d like either version.

Dark Star
(as noted)

Both versions of The Fly, but for different reasons
Conquest of Space for its historical value

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea – The Richard Fleischer/Disney version. Disney shoulda done more Verne – the only other one they did was the not-so-good In Search of the Castaways.


1984** (the 1984 version) **

The Fabulous World of Jules Verne
Fantastic Planet** (just for the visuals and throwaway bits)

Some TV episodes:
The Original Outer Limits:

Demon with a Glass Hand (my favorite overall TV SF episode) and Soldier, both by Harlan Ellison

Adam Link, Robot (also done for the newer series)

**Feasibility Study


newer Outer Limits:

Inconstant moon (based on Larry Niven story)
(there were several others, but I’m not that familiar with them)

the BBC Version of Day of the Triffids

When Worlds Collide

First Spaceship on Venus

The original Dragonslayer is a pretty good movie, and has a great dragon.

Have you seen Equilibrium? It’s one of those “future dystopia” movies, with Christian Bale and lots of gunfighting.

For Fantasy:

The Wizard of Oz (Of course! The 1939 film)

Return to Oz (underrated, and tries to do the impossible, payimng homage to both the books and the 1939 film)

Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, and the other two Harryhausen Sinbad movies, Golden Voyage of… and …and the Eye of the Tiger, which aren’t nearly as good. Sventh Voyage provides one of the best pre-CGI dragons.
Jason and the Argonauts – the Harryhausen film, again, bot the TV CGI movie

Clash of the Titans – It’s got Medusa! How can I not love it? Also, the biggest bevy of stars ever in a Harryhausen film, and the best live-action writing and direction in a long time.
The Seven Faces of Dr. Lao – not as good as the Charges G. Ginney book, but not bad.

The aforementioned Dragonslayer. If you do like drahgon’s, you’d love this.


The Sword and the Sorceror – all the good parts are stolen from Conan stories (this film just beat the first Conan movie to the theaters). One of the nobles is played by Fontaine from Murphy Brown! And Richard Mull of Night Court plays the Evil Magician! With an incredibly stupid triple-bladed rocket-propelled sword!

Sorceress – there are at least three films with this title. I refer to the circa 1981 Roger Corman film. It looks as if it was filmed in some little European country and dubbed into English, but it was actually made in the USA. With awful makeup, models, and dialogue. And cheap special effects!

Jack the Giant Killer – an attempt to rip off Harryhausen’s Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, by hiring away the star (Kerwin Matthews), the villain (Torin Thatcher, with hair for once), and the director (Nathan Juran). Jim Danforth provides the less-than-Harryhausen animation. I have fond memories of this from when I was a child that re-viewing does not sustain. The Dragon at the end has big puppy-dog eyes, like the Luck dragon from never-Ending story. the leprechaun who speaks only in rhyme is mock-worthy. With witches, two giants (one with two heads), witches, a viking, and a sea monster. There was reportedly a version that they dubbed singing into, but I’ve never seen that.
The Sword and the Dragon – US-titled release of the Russian film Ilya Mourometz that i grew up watching (a lot of the voices are provided by the omnipresent Paul frees, so the leader of the Tugars (Mongols) sounds suspiciously like Boris Badenov. MST3K covered this one, but it’s not on any of the commercially released discs – you’ll have to go to the gray market to buy that. With a surprisingly good triple-headed fire-breathing dragon.

The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm – a George Pal production that was originally in Cinerama, and suffers from reduction to the small screen. It has a Jim Danforth-animated dragon, and some other animated effects. With Buddy Hackett(!!)

That one got hammered by the critics when it came out for some reason, but I enjoyed it. It wasn’t the best film of all time (That would be Spaced Invaders) but it was pretty good and faithful to the book, imo.

Sp I recommend 13th Warrior as well.

Also Spaced Invaders.

The Day the Earth Caught Fire

A fantastic British end of the world flick.

Very British and very good. A nice look at the 50’s/60’s as well and how papers were ran then.

5ive Days to Midnight is the best made for tv movie I’ve ever seen.

The Rocketeer


Forever Young