10 Best Space Movies Of All Time

8. The Fifth Element (1997)

Starchild 2001 Space Odyssey

Many years before the flawed but visually outstanding Valerian, Luc Besson brought the thunder from outer space with Le Cinquième Élément.

The Fifth Element tells the story of 23rd century cab driver Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis) as he gets caught up in an intergalactic race for four mystical stones that can harness the elements and protect Earth from the ultimate cosmic big bad. There's a mysterious girl, a power-hungry bad guy and as many breeds of bright and scaly space alien as you can shake a multipass at.

It's bright, fun and wholeheartedly original, capitalising on Bruce Willis' Die Hard tough guy notoriety and packing in a cast of (literally) colourful characters, including Gary Oldman's scenery-chewing villain Zorg, Milla Jovovich's ginger fish out of water Leeloo and Chris Tucker's high-pitched live-streaming talk show host Ruby Rhod, with all the hot and dripping subtext that name entails.

Blending sci-fi, action and comedy with superb practical effects and set design, The Fifth Element never takes itself too seriously and, as a direct result, produces an enduring and infinitely watchable piece of über '90s space.


Writer, editor and lifelong critic of test screenings, money men and films-by-committee.