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Categories: Features

It’s not to everyone’s tastes, but if it is then nothing else quite hits the spot. Here’s our list of the ten best sci-fi horror films of the 2010s (so far).

Obviously everyone’s definition for what does, and does not, constitute the label “science-fiction” is as contentious as what does, and doesn’t, qualify something as a horror film. So take this all with the requisite grain of salt that is subjectivity but bear in mind that care was taken to be as objective as possible in terms of filmmaking skill. (You may find some of the titles you think deserve to be on here on our twenty best regular old horror films of the 2010s list or on our best American films of 2017 list.)


10. Morgan (2016)

Luke Scott does the old man (Ridley) proud as he strikes out into his own sci-fi world. It’s not wholly original, bearing a striking resemblance to another film on this very list, but its got a terrific cast, that isn’t being held back, and a distinct sterility that gives it an oddly beautiful, and lasting, ambience.


9. The Belko Experiment (2016)

Workplace politics and aggressive personality types get pushed to the extreme as Office Space meets Battle Royale, complete with exploding heads and everything. The James Gunn penned sci-fi experiment is an old idea but executed very well, with all the gleeful gore fans of his would hope for.


8. Antiviral (2012)

A simulation of a fever dream that’s as close to the real thing as you can get, or would want to. Brandon Cronenberg’s debut finds Caleb Landry Jones trafficking illness itself, in his own body, for people who grow edible tissue from their favourite celebrity’s DNA to better consume them.


7. The Endless (2017)

The strained relationship between two brothers begins to fracture when they return to the camp of a cult which raised them. Then the laws of time and space begin to fracture too. A, surprisingly funny, gem from acting/writing/directing/cinematography/editing team Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead.


6. Coherence (2013)

The strange effects of a passing comet turns dinner with old friends into an intense debate over quantum physics and inevitable outcomes as the lines between various decisions and realities begin to blur. A brilliantly acted, quite clearly often improvised, slice of dark sci-fi drama.


5. Upgrade (2018)

Leigh Whannell’s story of a man seeking revenge for his wife’s murder, with the help of what amounts to an incredibly powerful version of Siri, is a B movie in the best way possible. Schlocky, predictable (it has about the same ending as Whannell’s first screenplay) and oh so enjoyable.


4. Ex Machina (2015)

Alex Garland’s own little Turing test is a lot like Morgan, only better. Domnhall Gleeson’s corporate nobody thinks he’s won the lottery when he’s tasked with assessing whether his boss’ latest creation can pass as human but it’s his own understanding of humanity that begins to come into question.


3. Prometheus (2012)

Body horror for the digital age. Ridley Scott’s return to his, hugely popular, science-fiction universe brought jeers for its lack of fan favourites but it’s made its own fanbase over the years with a deeper exploration of the machinations within that universe. You can read our take on them here.


2. Alien: Covenant (2017)

Originally selling itself as a straight remake of Alien, Ridley Scott’s sequel to Prometheus changes tack at, almost exactly, the halfway mark and becomes Psycho in space. Making Michael Fassbender’s intergalactic serial killer, David, the true monster of the movie.


1. Annihilation (2018)

Alex Garland’s otherworldly mind-bender takes some of the most affecting aspects of left-field science-fiction filmmaking, even earning favourable comparisons to the sci-fi work of the legendary Andrei Tarkovsky, while still being hugely entertaining. You can read our full review here.


Click here to check out our list of the Top 20 Horror Films of the 2010s (so far)

Click here to check out our list of the Top 10 Horror-Comedies of the 2010s (so far)

Click here to check out our list of the 10 Most Intense Horror Films of the 2010s (so far)

Click here to check out our list of the Top 20 Underrated Horror Films of All Time


Mark Birrell

Mark is the editor of The Spread as well as a freelance copywriter and lifelong cinephile. For writing enquiries, you can email him at mark@cinemajam.com and you can follow him on Twitter @markwbirrell

Posted on Oct 31, 2018

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