Yesterday marked the 66th anniversary of the “Roswell incident.” While the verdict is still out as to what exactly crash landed outside of Roswell, New Mexico, the incident has sparked decades of debate, conspiracy theories, and imagination. Let’s celebrate with a movie night. Here are ten movies featuring alien encounters, both hostile and benevolent, to choose from:
Take me to your leader:
1. Mars Attacks (1996)
Tim Burton creates a loving homage to B movie alien invasion flicks of the 1950’s and it is a masterpiece.
2. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956 & 1978)
I couldn’t decide between the two, ya’ll. They’re both so great. Kevin McCarthy is so wonderful in the original, but, hello, Spock is in the 1978 remake. Do you see how my heart was conflicted? Well, whatever you do, don’t fall asleep next to large fruit.
3. They Live (1988)
One of the most quotable movies of all time (“I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass… and I’m all out of bubblegum”), everyone’s favorite wrestler, “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, finds magic sunglasses that help him to see that Earth has already been invaded by aliens and it’s up to him to do something about it.
4. “V” The original miniseries (1983)
Marc Singer, Marc Singer, Maaarc Siiiiiiiinger! Remember when Robin has “relations” with one of the Visitors, Brian, and she has twins and one of the babies looks like an alien, but acts like a human baby, and the other twin looks like a human baby but she has to feed it mice?? Me too. Remind me not to give birth to any lizard babies.
5. Predator 2 (1990)
I know some of you might be offended that I chose to sing the praises of Predator 2 over the original, but hear me out. We see Predator(s) attacking humans in an urban setting. Danny Glover, an LAPD officer, has to hunt down Predator, not knowing if he’s looking for a serial killer, drug lords, or what. At the end, the other Predators give him props for being such a bad ass. In the original, Arnold and his buddies are a bunch of commandos, so while coming up against a killer alien is a bit of a surprise, they’re still a little better equip to deal with unusual violent circumstances (and explosives, and rocket launchers, etc) than your typical city dweller. I say Lt. Harrigan’s victory over alien hostiles is more triumphant in that his challenge is greater. So deal with it. Plus, Gary Busey. Hello. PLUS, Adam Baldwin from Firefly is in it and Maria Conchita Alonso from Running Man and Ruben Blades… basically, everybody is in this movie.
We come in peace:
1. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
Well, duh. I guess this one’s a given, but it’s a good movie. Richard Dreyfyuss is great in it, and because of this movie, mashed potatoes will never be the same. I just rewatched American Graffiti and it rekindled my Richard Dreyfuss love.
2. Mac & Me (1988)
In an attempt to capitalize off the success of E.T., these Mysterious Alien Creatures (M.A.C… get it?), who sustain themselves on McDonald’s and Cocoa-Cola, befriend a boy while trying to keep away from NASA and make it back to their home world. You will feel perplexed and have nightmares.
3. Earth Girls Are Easy (1988)
Three furry aliens, played by Jeff Goldblum, Jim Carrey, and Damon Wayans, crash-land in a beautician’s swimming pool. Luckily it’s Gina Davis’ pool. She and her friend, played by Julie Brown, use their beautician skillz to shave the boys down and turn them in to super hunks. Add a few musical numbers and some romance and you’ve got yourself a winner.
4. *Batteries Not Included (1987)
Tenants of an apartment building are given notice to vacate so that the owners can demolish the building. When the tenants are slow to comply, thugs are sent in to encourage them to leave. Luckily for the tenants, little toy-sized mechanical aliens show up to befriend an defend them from the malevolent developers.
5. Coneheads (1993)
The early 90’s were abound with movies based on SNL sketches. In this particular feature film, an alien couple gets left behind on earth after a scouting mission. Making the best of a bad situation, they try their hardest to blend in and integrate until they can be rescued.