10 Most Influential Sci-Fi Films Of All Time

9. The War Of The Worlds (1953)

2001 A Space Odyssey

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 85%

The post-war period would later become known as the Golden Age of science fiction, with the advent of the atomic bomb being used to play on audiences' fear of nuclear apocalypse. The start of the Cold War also saw widespread Communist paranoia grip the United States, and this too soon found its way into film.

Director George Pal was the first to combine the two elements in a movie with 1950's Destination Moon, which follows a nuclear-powered spaceship manned by four astronauts as they attempt to reach the moon before the Soviets. Pal was responsible for a number of successful sci-fi films over the early part of the decade, though the most influential has to be The War of the Worlds.

Aliens were ingrained in the public consciousness after the Roswell incident of 1947, and Pal's well-timed adaptation of H. G. Wells' novel took that curiosity and turned it into fear. While the cast were criticised for their somewhat wooden performances, the special effects were lauded and the film demonstrated an increased technical excellence that led to critical recognition of the sci-fi genre.

The War of the Worlds would go on to be adapted for the screen a further four times and inspired a number of alien invasion movies, most notably Independence Day.


Phil still hasn't got round to writing a profile yet, as he has an unhealthy amount of box sets on the go.