Prime Video‘s extensive streaming library is certainly impressive. In between their high-profile streaming exclusives and notable licensed library content, their plethora of science-fiction offerings combines vintage classics and modern masterpieces alike. Science fiction enthusiasts can rejoice! You now have cyberpunk dystopias and blissful utopias in equal measure, readily available at the click of a button. All we need now are replicators, lightsabers, and light-speed travel.
Want some intelligent examinations of alien life? Or how about a guy in an armored suit blowing things up for an hour and a half? Just about every taste is accounted for at Prime Video. Because of this, we thought we’d highlight the best of the best that this streaming service has to offer in terms of science-fiction films. You may be surprised at what’s buried in Prime Video’s content library.
Updated on September 9th, 2023 by Neville Naidoo: This article has been updated with additional content to keep the discussion fresh and relevant with even more information and new entries.
17 Stargate (1994)
Back in the day, this sci-fi gem from disaster film specialist Roland Emmerich was one of the coolest films around. Starring Kurt Russell and The Blacklist’s James Spader, Stargate revolved around the discovery of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs that refer to a “stargate” – a device that creates a wormhole gateway to interdimensional travel. Entering it, a scientist and soldiers are transported to a distant planet that seems to have many similarities to Ancient Egypt, and even has humans.
They learn that the ancient Egyptian God, Ra, was actually an alien who once traveled to Earth and enslaved humans. However, the humans later revolted and buried the stargate to keep him from coming back, but on this planet, Ra does return and isn’t happy with the trespassers. The film’s success led to planned sequels that never materialized but did see 10 seasons of the popular spin-off show Stargate SG-1 air between 1997 and 2007. After years in the making, this year it was finally announced that a reboot of the film and TV franchise is going ahead.
16 Rampage (2018)
Following director Brad Peyton’s first two collaborations with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson for Journey 2: The Mysterious Island and San Andreas, the pair teamed up again for 2018’s Rampage. Another big-budget film packed with plenty of great special effects and action, the film sees Johnson play a former Special Forces soldier named Davis Okoye, who now works as a primatologist and the head of an anti-poacher unit.
When a gene manipulation company called Energyne inadvertently releases a pathogen across the US, different animals such as an American crocodile and a wolf are exposed to it. The result turns them into genetically mutated monstrous versions of themselves that wreak havoc. An albino gorilla that Davis cares for is also exposed, leading him and a geneticist he teams up with to try and capture all the animals before they cause too much damage, while also trying to stop Energyne and their sinister plans to use the pathogen as a biological weapon.
15 Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017)
Billed as a sci-fi “space opera” by famed French director, Luc Besson, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets was a visually beautiful film that also packed in some great action and effects. It also featured a stellar cast with Dane DeHaan (Green Goblin in The Amazing Spider-Man 2), as well as Carla Delevingne, Ethan Hawke, Clive Owen, and even Rihanna.
The film takes place in the 28th century and saw its leads play a pair of human soldiers for the “United Human Federation”. In between their romantic tension, the partners must race against time to stop a threat to the usually peaceful and sprawling metropolis known as Alpha, as well as the universe at large. With a host of different alien creatures and species featured throughout the movie, this one is a treat for true sci-fi lovers.
14 The Running Man (1987)
Known as an icon of the sci-fi world for his role in The Terminator franchise, Arnold Schwarzenegger also has other great films from the genre under his belt. Films like the original Total Recall and 1987’s The Running Man are prime examples. The latter is loosely based on a novel of the same name and is best described as The Truman Show meets The Hunger Games.
Centering on a macabre television show in a dystopia future, it follows a contestant on it trying to survive its sick concept and twisted host. Marketed as a game show, the contest allows prisoners to “run”, but allows “stalkers” to hunt them down and brutally kill them if caught. If they survive, freedom is theirs, together with a government pardon and a tropical vacation. Given its novelty and Schwarzenegger’s fame at the time, the film became one of his most popular.
13 The Tomorrow War (2021)
The Tomorrow War was a blockbuster Amazon original film that saw Chris Pratt take the lead as a biology teacher who gets roped into fighting a futuristic war. Featuring a wonderfully creative concept, the film centers on a message sent from the future that warns people of an alien invasion that will wipe out the Earth unless people from the present can enlist as soldiers and help fight in the future.
Pratt’s character, James, gets drafted and is soon hurled into the middle of the conflict, using rudimentary wormhole technology to send him into the future as a combatant. Facing death around every corner, James soon realizes that the war may be unwinnable unless a scientist very close to his past self can help avert the end of the world. Visually mesmerizing, this is one great film if you love sci-fi movies packed with tons of action.
12 M3GAN (2022)
In an era where killer doll tropes are overused, it is quite normal to find recent films based around the concept underwhelming. However, M3GAN is an exception because when its trailer was released, many people expected it to be another lackluster film that failed to deliver on its promises. Despite being predictable, the movie surprisingly offers a fresh prospect on artificial intelligence and is arguably one of the best thrillers of 2023.
Following an unfortunate accident, eight-year-old Cady (Violet McGraw) has lost both of her parents and is coping with grief with the help of her Aunt Gemma (Allison Williams), a talented roboticist who works at a toy company. As part of her dream project, she employs artificial intelligence to create a life-like doll named M3GAN, which instantly bonds with her niece and helps her cope with loneliness. However, before Gemma can discern the true intentions of M3GAN, the doll grows overprotective of Cady, which results in a terrifying outcome that the roboticist never anticipated.
11 Ghost in the Shell (1995)
Usually, when people hear the phrase “Ghost in the Shell,” they immediately form a mental image of Scarlett Johansson trying to hunt down a hacker who manipulates cyborgs to achieve his ambitions. However, Mamoru Oshii’s original adaptation of the famed manga came to life two decades ago. Ghost in the Shell is a visually stunning anime that leans more toward the darker story aimed at adult audiences. With its convoluted cyber-punk theme and masterful storytelling, the film is meticulously crafted, providing a fresh outlook on the sci-fi genre.
Set in the year 2029, where cyborgs have become the norm as a result of advanced technology, the plot follows Major Motoko Kusanagi, an elite officer in a secret police division that deals with cybercrime and terrorism. When she comes across a mysterious cyber criminal named Puppet Master, who hacks into the brains of cyborgs to commit crimes and acquire highly confidential information, truths about her own life come into the light, and she is determined to bring him to justice no matter what.
10 Out of the Blue (2003)
The topic of aliens and UFOs has always been up for debate among humans, and a myriad of films have been made based on it since the 1950s. However, when everything is labeled as fiction, it is natural to dismiss it as a form of entertainment, but what about the documentaries that shed light on the complicated and disturbing truths of extraterrestrial beings?
Out of the Blue is one such documentary that has one of the best-ever takes on UFOs, with convincing evidence and real-life footage. The film makes you question the reality and the possibility of something lurking beneath the Earth’s surface, but it also fascinates you with mind-blowing theories. If you particularly enjoy documentaries about aliens, Out of the Blue, narrated by Peter Coyote, is worth checking out.
9 Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes (2020)
What would you do if you could see into the future? Will you change it so that life gets easier? If the film Butterfly Effect has taught us anything, it is that every single thing we alter in our lives results in unforeseen consequences, and Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes is a goofy take on such a serious phenomenon.
In the film, Kato, a cafe owner who leads a simple life, discovers that his TV transcends time and reveals two minutes ahead in the form of his future self. When his friends discover this weird occurrence, they try to play around with it. But once they get their hands on some money, they realize that it belongs to some savage gangsters who will go to any lengths to retrieve it. How will they fix the situation when using the TV only makes matters worse?
8 Eva (2011)
Kike Maíllo’s science fiction film lives on in the viewer’s mind long after the credits have rolled. Eva traffics the familiar tropes of science-fiction but aces them all the way, and manages to retain an overall ethos of humanity and compassion. Set in a distant future where robots co-exist with humans, a renowned cybernetic engineer Alex (Daniel Brühl) returns to his hometown to finish a project he had seemingly run away from.
Tasked with developing a new child android dubbed S1-9, Alex spends time with a 10-year-old named Eva, who he finds out is the daughter of his brother David and his former lover Lana. Eva’s storyline presents a futuristic world that is steeped in human emotion, highlighting human relationships in a technological society rather than the other way around. As such, it’s almost a precursor to last year’s masterpiece, After Yang.
Stream on Prime Video
7 Coherence (2013)
A crossbreed between a psychological thriller and a sci-fi film, Coherence is what you get when filmmaking ingenuity meets budget constraints. A resourceful film that’s proof that inventive filmmakers can create a lot with little, Coherence takes place in a suburban house where friends hang out over dinner and drinks. Coinciding with the soirée is a comet that’s scheduled to pass over the country, which in turn causes things to get weird, very weird.
Shot on a shoestring budget, it’s evident that Coherence is financially malnourished, but that doesn’t take away from its creative prowess and excellent performances. As soon as the film delves into its premise, it shifts gears at an eerie pace, gluing the viewer right onto the screen.
Stream on Prime Video
6 Nope (2022)
With Nope, Jordan Peele moved to a more hybrid type of horror film that came with its own set of moral commentary. Touching upon humanity’s need to capture and broadcast spectacles, Peele’s parable throws light on the dark side of this trait.
Unlike most of his previous work that rated high on the spook meter, Nope is less frightening than it is thoughtful, questioning the moral fabric of humanity and the direction it’s heading in, told within the structural framework of sci-fi more than horror.
Stream on Prime Video
5 Jurassic World Dominion (2022)
Jurassic World: Dominion is a Jurassic Park movie for long-time fans of the series. Years after the events of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, dinosaurs now live among humans in every corner of the planet. But when the planet’s two apex predators come face to face with each other, difficult questions must be asked when one has to rise above the other.
Along with featuring a returning Chris Pratt, you may be happy to see the return of Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, and Sam Neill to the wonderful world of dinosaur blockbusters. The conclusion of the modern-day Jurassic Park trilogy pulls no punches in delivering a thrilling science-fiction story. Is it cheating to bring out Jeff Goldblum just for some nostalgia points? Absolutely. But, on the plus side, you get to see more of Jeff Goldblum.
Stream on Prime Video
4 Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)
Before he would enter The Matrix, and way before he killed hundreds of mobsters and assassins, Keanu Reeves took on a surfer-dude persona along with Alex Winter in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure. A comparatively lighthearted science fiction film focused around time travel, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure sees a pair of California goofballs blessed with a time machine via an interdimensional George Carlin, allowing them to travel between different periods in time.
When they realize they can utilize this newfound device to ace their history report, they put two and two together and bring historical figures from the past back into the present. Reeves and Winter are so infectiously positive, oblivious, and well-meaning, that it makes Bill & Ted one of the comfiest viewing experiences you may ever have. It is a movie that you genuinely cannot take seriously, which ultimately works to its benefit.
Stream on Prime Video
3 Interstellar (2014)
A Christopher Nolan classic, 2014’s Interstellar turned heads during its initial release before cementing itself as one of his most compelling films. Set in the near future, humanity finds itself in the middle of a global famine, leaving a group of astronauts on a journey to discover a new home. Through the utilization of a newly discovered wormhole, they’re able to jump to a new galaxy in an instant — though each planet they discover chisels away at their hope, piece by piece.
Out of every Nolan film, Interstellar remains one of the most viscerally beautiful. Heavily utilizing miniatures and practical effects alongside CGI, the breadth of the universe is captured in one of the most captivating dramas of the last decade. By all means, if you want to see Matthew McConaughey make you cry, this is the film to do it. While it’s not available on Prime Video currently, fans can watch it on the Paramount+ or MGM+ channels offered by Amazon.
Stream on Prime Video
2 Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
Before writing Raiders of the Lost Ark with George Lucas, Philip Kaufman would direct Invasion of the Body Snatchers, his first major box office success. A remake of the titular 1956 film, this body-horror science fiction flick sees gelatinous creatures land on Earth and take the form of plant-like pods. A pair of scientists, played by Donald Sutherland and Brooke Adams, attempt to bring awareness to this illusive invasion as horrifying “pod people” begin to take over the human population.
With some interpreting the original as a commentary on McCarthyism, this updated allegory of the 1970s can be seen as a reflection of paranoia found within the United States at the time. Fans of They Live will also appreciate Body Snatchers‘ direct critique of consumerism; while it isn’t as blatant as They Live, the humdrum lives that the “pod people” inherit don’t necessarily change all that much.
Stream on Prime Video
1 Rebuild of Evangelion
The popular anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion may feel a bit intimidating to approach if you’ve never given it a shot before. Fortunately, for both long-time fans and newcomers alike, the Rebuild of Evangelion film series offers both a condensed version of the original series run, in addition to brand-new twists and turns that take the story in a completely new direction. These films remain exclusively licensed to Prime Video, meaning you won’t be able to stream them elsewhere.
Taking place throughout four films, Rebuild of Evangelion takes place in a futuristic version of Tokyo, wherein high schooler Shinji Ikari tries his best to get by. But when Shinji’s father recruits him into the government organization “Nerv,” he’ll find himself as the unwilling pilot of an “Evangelion” — a gigantic, bio-organic machine made to fight the various monsters that litter the Earth’s surface.
Stream on Prime Video