The best space movies of the 2000s, ranked

One of the best parts of a well-told story is a vibrant, emotional setting, and there is perhaps no greater canvas of the imagination than outer space. Humanity’s ability to explore space over the past century has blossomed alongside a deep interest in the great void above all realms of art. The mystery of space has also caught the attention of filmmakers, whose medium lends itself well to portraying the wonder of the endless dark expanse.

CGI technology has developed in leaps and bounds over the past few decades, and movies like Gravity Where Interstellar are examples. But there was a time when the technological ability to showcase space hadn’t quite caught up with the spiritual hunger to do so. Yet the filmmakers persevered in telling stories set in space, and the limitations presented by the technology of the day only fueled their willingness to be creative. Here are the best space movies of the 2000s, ranked.

8 Avatar

20th century fox

Avatar created one of the greatest cultural moments of recent decades, even if its history does not stand up to the standards of some audiences and critics. James Cameron’s film has been compared to Star wars for its reach and social impact, and for the technological advancement represented by the film. Set on the fictional moon of Pandora, Avatar follows the journey of an ancient sailor who befriends a native alien population and joins them in resisting imperial control by humans throughout history. A part of Avatar’The underlying themes have drawn differing attention and judgments from critics. Adam Cohen praised the anti-imperialist subtext, comparing the metaphor to other major world conflicts involving imperialism. As one of the highest grossing films of all time, it’s natural that its reception was divided – but what’s undeniable is how popular the film was and is today.

Related: Avatar 2 Producer Talks Plot Details & The Challenge Of Writing Four Sequels

seven Space cowboys

Village Roadshow Pictures

The somewhat cliché plot of this space adventure story is reinforced by the charismatic performances of Clint Eastwood and Tommy Lee Jones. A team of astronauts are dispatched to prevent a Soviet satellite from crashing to earth, and the difficulties presented by the mission threaten to overwhelm them. For a 2000 film, the special effects were quite impressive for audiences at the time. Ironically, the story is more of a down-to-earth approach, adhering to the known realities and dangers of space travel, making this film more of a drama with sci-fi elements than a sci-fi film. .

6 Star trek

Spyglass Entertainment

JJ Abrams forgoes some of the more political and philosophical themes of previous ones Star trek works to create something more akin to a long, action-adventure thrill ride. Unconditional fans of Star trek lamented the loss of those themes, which characterized the franchise for decades, but found a lot to love in the mind of a director who knows how to engage and entertain audiences. Despite safe and low-risk ground, Star trek brought the franchise back to the mainstream after a long time and made peace with older fans by placing the film’s continuity in an alternate reality to preserve the events of the original films.

Related: Shatner In Space Documentary To Detail Star Trek Star’s Space Flight

5 Moon

Stage 6 movies

This entry on the list occupies a particular sort of existential and humanistic science fiction in the same vein as Andrei Tarkovsky. Sam Bell, the lone keeper of a moon mining facility begins to experience strange hallucinations and is suspicious of the circumstances of his moon job. Fans of all walks of life will find something to enjoy in Moon, between intense action scenes, laconic dramatic exchanges and sumptuous visuals. Sam Rockwell, who plays the protagonist, brings a very personal and subtle touch to the role which reinforces the dark and introspective vibe of the film.

4 Serenity

Universal Images

Serenity is the sequel to Joss Whedon’s short-lived TV series Firefly. The film follows the adventures of the crew and two particularly powerful new characters who face the threat of the Reavers, a cannibalistic faction that pursues them through space. With a quick wit and alluring characters, Serenity is a tightly-told adventure story set in space featuring Joss Whedon’s signature mix of action and comedy, with a bit of political satire as well. Moral dilemmas seem surprisingly intimate for a space adventure film, and are handled with the care necessary to create impactful moments without the film straying into melodrama territory.

3 Wall-E

Image via Walt Disney Pictures

Brimming with the optimism audiences expect from a Disney-Pixar movie, what’s more surprising Wall-E is the depth of despair he plunges to create that joy. The film draws on the increasingly tangible fear of environmental ruin, putting us in the eyes of a trash compactor robot who comes to observe and experience a version of humanity paralyzed by its worst qualities. Watching Wall-E is a strangely nostalgic experience, which reminds audiences how both beautiful and perverse our actions as a species can be. The film was to critical acclaim and critic Richard Corliss even called it one of the best films of the decade.

Related: Pixar’s Turning Red Trailer # 2 Introduces Heartthrob Boy Band 4 * Town

2 Sunshine

Film company on the move

Sunshine follows the crew of the Icarus II, on a mission to rekindle the dying sun and bring sunlight back to earth. The drama unfolds carefully and horribly, as the crew members make careful decisions that begin to degrade the group’s collective sanity. Many science fiction films mimic the deep space model of the human psyche, but Sunshine stands out thanks to the fantastic performances of its cast and Danny Boyle’s talent for discovering and portraying raw, tough emotion. The action scenes and overall value of the production also contribute to its success, making for 100 gripping minutes that will be remembered weeks later.

Related: 10 Best Danny Boyle Movies, Ranked

1 Treasure planet

treasure planet
Walt Disney Pictures

Leave it to the animation world to present outer space in the brightest, wildest and most fantastical light. Treasure planet follows Jim Hawkins, a disgruntled young man taken on a great adventure to find the Treasure Planet, an infamous spaceship commanded by pirates. The film’s vision of outer space comes to life with a steampunk aesthetic and revolutionary new animation techniques for the time. It is one of the few films that portrays space as a magical realm, and the creators’ imaginations are as limitless as the art they created.

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