10 Awesome Sci-Fi Moments
10 Awesome Sci-Fi Moments
Innerspace (1987) – Miniaturization
With its zany story and manic pacing, Innerspace delivers a whole host of cool sci-fi moments, but none are cooler than the miniaturization sequence that see Tuck Pendleton shrank done to the size of an atom.
inspired by the 1966 science fiction film Fantastic Voyage, Innerspace tells a similar story of a scientific crew exploring the human body. Down-on-his-luck naval aviator Lt. Tuck Pendleton volunteers for a secret miniaturization experiment and shrunk to microscopic size. Sitting in a submersible pod, Pendleton is subjected to high centrifugal forces before being broken down into atomic form via some form of atom-smasher. The sequence is visualised via a bright white light spilling out Pendleton in the film’s most stunning moment.
X-Men: The Last Stand (2006) – Bridge
Films hate bridges, we get it. Barely a year goes by without some Sci-Fi flick tearing down monuments and historic bridges. In the third movie, X-Men: The Last Stand, it’s the Golden Gate Bridge that gets it. In the Last Stand, Magneto moves the bridge so that it stretches over to Alcatraz island, ripping it up from the ground and slowly floating it across the gap. It’s an amazing set piece, and one that stand out firmly in the X-Men films.
Back to the Future (1985) – Time Travel
Time Travelling never looked better then when it was done from within a DeLorean. Back to the Future introduced us all to risks of temporal causality when Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) finds himself stuck in the past. Despite several on screen time jumps throughout the films series, it’s the very first that wowed audiences, as the DeLorean screeches into the future, and almost hitting Marty and inventor Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd), leaving a flaming tire trail in its path. The effects shot and dramatic score married together into a perfect cinematic moment.
Matrix (1999) – Bullet Time
The use of bullet time is over saturated these days, but the film that launched the effect is still the best example. The 1999 smash hit The Matrix was a special effects bonanza, filled with dozens of memorable fight sequences and action set pieces, but the moment that left audiences a gasp was Neo’s (Keanu Reeves) falling bullet dodge.
Blade Runner (1982) – Los Angeles
Based on the Philip K Dick Novel, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, Director Ridly Scott created a dark and realistic world for his 1982 film Blade Runner. The neo-noir dystopian Los Angeles is filled with towering buildings, industrial flames and neon lit advertising boards , and the fly through at the start of the film, set to Vangelis’ dreamlike electronic score, is one of the most breath-taking cityscapes you’ll ever see in cinema.
Ghostbusters (1984) – Stay Puft Marshmallow Man
Every film needs a grand finale, and what better way to end a film then conjuring up a 112 foot Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Ghostbusters, the Ivan Reitman directed supernatural comedy, saw four guys strapping on proton packs to capture spooks and spectres, but when faced with choosing their own destroyer, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man pops up to the jubilation of viewers the world over. He might be made of tasty marshmallow, but he stole the show!
Independence Day (1996)– Death Ray
Big explosions are paramount when it comes to Sci-FI. The bigger they are, the more money they pull into the box office. In Independence Day, an extra-terrestrial race decides to invade earth, and start with a series of demolitions. Starting with Earth’s major cities and military bases, they position large ships over the top of their targets and release a killer death ray down upon the people below. The combined destruction of New York City, Los Angeles, and Washington D.C. are showcased in one of the most terrifying explosive set pieces in cinema history. Ending with The White House succumbing to the wall of fire, this scene had us all at the edge of our seats, as the world fell to the alien invaders.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) – Hasta la vista T1000
When James Cameron’s sequel to the sci-fi hit Terminator came out, the internet was still in its infancy, and spoilers were not even a thing. Terminator 2: Judgment Day was released on 16 August 1991, and no one had a clue about Arnold Schwarzenegger old switcharoo on the old bad guy routine. So just as the audience were a gasp with the revelation that Arnie was a good guy, but we also get our first look at the amazing special effects that turned Robert Patrick into the deadly liquid metal T1000. The best moments comes as the T1000 is drenched in liquid nitrogen, giving Arnie the opportunity to say his second most quotable line, just before he pops a cap in the frozen terminator. It was a roof raising moment in sci-fi and had audience the world over saying “Hasta la vista, baby”
Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977) – Star Destroyer
Pick a moment, any moment, from Star Wars and it would deserve a spot on this list. But rather than being a list about Star Wars, we had to pick just one single instance that had our draws drop. For me, it’s the opening Star Destroyer scenes. Now it might not seem too extraordinary being watched on your TV, but believe me, sitting in the cinema with full 7.1 surround sound, it’s something amazing. Seeing that ship roaring across the screen, as the heavy base shakes the room, is one of the most satisfying and fantastical things you could experience on the silver screen.
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) – The Vortex
Whilst Stanley Kubrick epic 2001: A Space Odyssey may still have many of us scratching our heads, there is no denying the films beauty. From operatic space walks to graceful space stations, the film captures the calm exquisiteness of space travel. It’s the films closing moments, that Dr. David Bowman (Keir Dullea) experience a bizarre cosmological phenomenon, that sees the screen filled with vivid and unusual colours and patterns, alongside strange alien landscapes that zoom by in a ten minute collage of light and sound . No one had seen or heard anything quite like this before, and people would repeatedly attend in cinemas, just for this sequence alone. Stories of hippies tripping out whilst lying under the screens are probably over exaggerated, but the effect it had on audience changed the way people saw cinema. Whilst some may accuse Kubrick of being self-indulgent, may film and art critics praised his use of sight and sound to create the incomprehensible journey that Bowman takes.
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