Alien invasion movies are a trope that might as well become a genre in itself. The main thing stopping it from doing so is the fact that it can blend so well in so many types of movies and stories that it would seem pretty… weird to do so. You can easily watch a thriller, a horror, a sci-fi, or a romantic comedy where the Earth is threatened by extraterrestrial forces.
Courtesy of 20th Century Fox
Since taste and preferences are subjective, we don’t really expect any opinions to align with our own, but this is the beauty of everything. It’s also why debates exist. Something we can all agree on is that Independence Day: Resurgence shouldn’t ever make the cut on any kind of alien invasion movie list.
#1 War of the Worlds
We’re referring both to the original and the new Steven Spielberg remake, which managed to hold up surprisingly well given the bad reputation that modern reboots have earned behind them. The movie gains a personal vibe by having the focus on a surviving family and the theme of the film revolves entirely against malevolent aliens attacking humanity.
#2 Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Aliens invade Earth and replace a bunch of humans with a bred of emotionless humanoids. The premise sounds ridiculous enough to be a breakthrough idea during a time when realism was a very important factor in cinema. What makes this movie even better is the symbolism of the fact that it’s supposed to represent society under communism.
#3 The Day The Earth Stood Still
An old classic, The Day The Earth Stood Still stands proudly among the best alien invasion movies if only for the liberating and important message it delivers. Meant to metaphorically present the anxiety and dread of the Cold War Era, the film involves an alien landing on Earth to tell humanity to cure itself of its destructive ways.
#4 Independence Day
Regardless of some may think of it, this is a movie you can easily consider a guilty pleasure. It sends strong patriotic messages and it involves humanity uniting against greater exterior threats. The fact that it’s helped by its stellar cast does help a lot too.
#5 The Thing
This John Carpenter classic was regarded at the time of its release as groundbreaking in the world of cinematography – in the pre-2000s era, at least. Reeking of plenty of Alien vibes, this movie tells the story of an extraterrestrial being that infiltrates a research station and takes the shape of the people there.
There’s no better way to heat up an argument than by bringing into discussions any M. Night Shyamalan movie. Signs, in particular, has plenty of people torn. Sure, the twist at the end is a bit underwhelming, but this flick definitely had a memorably unique tone to it.
#7 District 9
District 9 is a somewhat underground name, which is a shame when you think about the fact that it has a pretty witty and ingenious premise. It has imprisoned aliens and, above all, it brings to the tables some much-needed shades of grey.
#8 Mars Attacks!
Since alien invasion movies were a growing trend at the time, the parodies didn’t fail to follow shortly thereafter. This particular one was directed by Tim Burton and it managed to capture a sense of insanity and campiness like no other movie on this list.
#9 They Live
The movie is somewhat cheesy and it places an unnecessary emphasis on the belief that some people have that we are being mind-controlled by aliens through television. But, hey, it wasn’t that much of a popular theory at that time, so we can give it a pass.
#10 Close Encounters Of The Third Kind
Directed by Steven Spielberg, the movie is centered on the premise of a group of people, protagonist included, who gather because of a strange call they feel after encountering an UFO.