The Best Space-Based Movies

Best Space-Based Movies

Space has been a favorite amongst directors for many decades now. Whether it is saving the planet from a rogue meteor, defeating clients trying to take over the globe, or simply exploring the dark abyss that is the universe, there is a movie about all of it. Let’s see the best space-based movies.


Space is an excellent theme for games, books, TV shows, and everything in between. However, if you want your fix of space-themed movies, these are the films for you. 

2001: A Space Odyssey

Stanley Kubrick’s only foray into space, 2001: A Space Odyssey, came out in 1968 and still holds weight today. If you are unfamiliar with the film, it is about an astronaut who travels to Jupiter with the help of an AI assistant. 


The Academy Award-winning film has beautiful imagery and scenes and is jam-packed with visuals and ideas that are still spoken about today. It can easily be considered the quintessential space movie. If you are only going to watch one film on this list, it should be this one. 


A small alien bursting out of the chest of one of Ripley’s (Sigourney Weaver) crew, XO Kane, is not something you quickly forget. Alien was the movie that set the tone for sci-fi horror and is still regularly touted as one of the best films in the horror and sci-fi genres. 


The story is simple: a spaceship and its crew are thrown into chaos when it is discovered that a violent alien intruder is on board. Some of the scenes are legendary, the story is exhilarating from start to finish, and the acting is world-class. 


Gravity is a space film that will make you realize how terrifying it must be to go up into space. The film follows a two-person space crew of Sandra Bullock and Geoge Clooney, who get stuck in orbit after their craft is hit by debris from an exploded satellite. 


The film is one of the most successful, with the visuals and special effects being praised by almost everyone. Speaking of the special effects, they took nearly three years to finish. 

Apollo 13

“Houston, we have a problem” is the most famous line from this legendary space movie. Apollo 13 tells the story of a doomed space crew trying to make their way back to earth and survive the journey.  


The movie is also jam-packed with some of the best actors, Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, Bill Paxton, Ed Harris, Gary Sinise, and many others. The two-time Oscar-winning film is another movie that is a must-see, whether you’re a fan of space or not. 


Interstellar is a space movie mixed with time travel that is pretty simple to understand and heart-wrenching at the same time. Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway star, as a team travel through a wormhole near Saturn to discover a new home for humanity. 


The movie is not only glorious to watch, but the time-travel aspect is something incredibly unique. As they travel further from the earth, more time passes on earth, and while they are barely aging, the same can’t be said for those they left behind. 

The Martian

A film described by some as a comedy, The Martian follows space explorer, Matt Damon, fighting to survive Mars after he is accidentally left behind after a mission. He must use what he has around him to stay alive long enough for another team to get him. 


While the story sounds more like a drama, Damon plays a funny, optimistic character, and the tale transforms from one of survival to one of Damon thriving on the planet. It also contains a very famous scene about potatoes that you have to watch. 

Event Horizon

While Event Horizon doesn’t have the same level of success as other films on this list, its cult status makes it worthy of a watch. The story centers around a rescue vessel that investigates the reappearance of a missing ship in Neptune’s orbit.


The film can seem slightly amateurish at times, but multiple terrifying themes are portrayed; you will be on the edge of your seat for most of the movie, and you might end up understanding why it is loved as much as it is.  


There aren’t many animations set in space, but Wall-E changed that. After humanity leaves Earth, one trash collecting and compacting robot is left behind to deal with the mess. When Wall-E discovers another robot on the planet, his real journey begins. 


While the themes in Wall-E can be seen as fairly adult as they deal with the destruction of the planet, it is packaged in an adorable and accessible way that will keep you glued to your screen from start to finish. 

Star Wars

Star Wars, probably the most famous of all space movies. What can be said about this franchise that hasn’t been said before? Legendary characters, planets, battles, ships, Star Wars has everything you want in a film set in space. 

With 12 films in the franchise now and animated TV shows, there is more than enough Star Wars available to get you hooked on this phenomenon that has transcended generations since the first movie was released. 

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