"It can be as entertaining as other movies but transcends to another level where you have to watch it again or talk about it endlessly to process what you saw."
Science fiction (particularly in the medium of movies and television) has always been of interest to me. The genre provides unique storytelling opportunities for any number of topics. Such popular entries in the genre as The Twilight Zone, Star Trek, Firefly, Robocop, Inception, Terminator, Doctor Who, Alien, and any number of superhero or even zombie stories showcase glimpses of the future (or near future) from the times of which they were made or at the very least inquire into intriguing "what if" scenarios that explore our humanity, be they dystopic or utopic.
I'm always excited to see good, new sci-fi. Films such as Her have kept up with the modern realizations of past sci-fi. I always seek stuff out and appreciate when it is recommended to me. I've even been working to see some classic films such as 2001: A Space Odyssey and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. They have something relevant to say, either within their own story, or from how and when they were made.
I find sci-fi to be the most rich genre to examine. Horror movies have never been my forte, and they seem rather straightforward. The same goes for action movies. Both are entertaining for sure, but sci-fi has something more beyond simple thrills or chills. It brings forth issues of social justice without dealing with it straight on. For example, in Star Trek, the Federation's relationship with Klingons is indicative of race issues during the time it was made or the fact of their vision of the future with humans of every creed working on the bridge of the Enterprise. Casting for a show like that makes a simple statement about where we should be heading as a society. Our interactions with aliens moreover in all sci-fi is an engaging allegory for the ways we deal with difference in our culture. Seeing different alien races as barbarians or odd simply for the fact they live differently or look different from us.
There is also the always fascinating examination of man and machine in sci-fi. In something like the Terminator series, we're literally fighting machines and fearing their eventual takeover of society. In Her, it explores how machines may teach us how to be more human.
In all of these movies, there are unique combinations of genres such a sci-fi horror, sci-fi romantic comedy, or sci-fi action that creating entertaining and thought provoking results. This is what I love about science fiction. It can be as entertaining as other movies but transcends to another level where you have to watch it again or talk about it endlessly to process what you saw.
What are some of your favorite sci-fi films? What you do enjoy about them? Let me know in the comments or tweet at me!