The broad umbrella that is the Sci-Fi action genre has regularly produced some of the biggest blockbuster events. A decent budget has always proved extremely helpful in these movies, the ability to nail those crucial special effects crucial in a film's success. Low budget properties have had to work harder to make their stories work, finding interesting premises and innovative ways to bring the action to life.
This list takes a look at those Sci-Fi action films that didn't garner the appreciation they deserved at the time, with many entries developing growing hatred rather than a cult following. Some of these movies made changes in lore that fans were unwilling to forgive, others had too many faulty parts for audiences to enjoy the good bits, while others on this list simply slipped under the radar.
Films that weren't successful at the box office but have garnered appreciation and a fan base over time have been excluded here, hence the likes of Edge of Tomorrow missing out. Cult classics have been (largely) ignored here too, the films on this list largely being friendless in the eyes of the general public.
So prepare to let go of your high expectations and enjoy the movies for what they are, as we look at the 10 most under-rated Sci-Fi action movies.
10. The Fifth Element
Expectations were ridiculously high for this Luc Besson feature, the film even receiving a preview showing at Cannes. This was most definitely not the market for this nonsensical bit of popcorn entertainment, a movie so overblown and so cartoonish that it is not surprising that it struggles in its excesses. The film though is much better on future viewings, the spectacular cinematography and roaring lead performance from Bruce Willis able to be appreciated over the campiness.
The film's plot centres around a mysterious fifth element that will dictate the fate of Earth, which takes the form of a female model. Milla Jovovich gives what can be only described as a bizarre interpretation of a super powerful being, who has the serious misfortune of running around her new surrounds half naked looking for help.
Thankfully that help comes from Bruce Willis' flying taxicab driver Korben Dallas, a former major who is effectively a futuristic John McClane. As an alien threat moves closer to wiping out the Earth, futuristic McClane and the super attractive element make their way to the planet Fhloston to recover the remaining elements and save the planet.
Willis is great fun in a measured performance that contrasts with the excesses in pretty much every other performance. Chris Tucker and Gary Oldman both give insanely over the top performances that can be enjoyed as a curiosity on future viewings. But it is the stunning attention to detail in the cinematography that is the highlight, especially of the flying traffic jams.