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The best sci-fi movies to stream on Max right now

Max's best science-fiction movies are thrilling and exciting

Screenshot from The Matrix
The Wachowskis / Warner Bros. Pictures

Science fiction hasn’t always been a genre that’s accessible and popular with mainstream audiences. With the influx of streaming services, such as Netflix and Max, sci-fi has become more incorporated into our movie-viewing habits. Hardcore fans and newcomers alike will enjoy the plethora of options on the service formally known as HBO Max, and we wanted to help you sort through the list of titles available on the service. From novel pictures to old classics, these are the best sci-fi movies you need to stream on Max right now.

Gravity (2013)

Genre Science Fiction, Thriller, Drama
Stars Sandra Bullock, George Clooney, Ed Harris
Directed by Alfonso Cuarón
While Gravity might not be considered one of the best sci-fi movies of 2023 if it were released today due to the amount of space films in the last decade, the Sandra Bullock/George Clooney film stands the test of time based on the chemistry between the actors and the direction of Alfonso Cuarón. Gravity connects us with our innermost fears of outer space, but also makes us wonder what’s out there and if humans are capable of finding it.

Dune (2021)

Genre Science Fiction, Adventure
Stars Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac
Directed by Denis Villeneuve

Dune is one of the all-time classic novels in science fiction literature, therefore this adaptation starring Timothée Chalamet, Oscar Isaac, and Zendaya was one of the most anticipated films of 2021. The story examines classic sci-fi topics like family, politics, and human purpose by using the struggle for intergalactic resources as the backdrop. The film was nominated for six Oscars and won six of the nominations for the 2021 ceremony. This helped give more credence to the sci-fi genre at the annual awards shows. A sequel is going to be released in March of 2024, but this first film will be on Max waiting for you to check out until that time comes.

District 9 (2009)

District 9
Genre Science Fiction
Stars Sharlto Copley, Jason Cope, Nathalie Boltt
Directed by Neill Blomkamp
It’s not often that alien movies focus on the foreign beings as the victims of human abuse, rather invasions are often depicted from the perspective of the people native to Earth. District 9 gives a unique perspective on how outsiders might be treated if they were to arrive on our planet, as they are segregated from South African society in the titular area so as to not mingle with the humans. The movie helps analogize themes of racism and discrimination, a trope that is sometimes common in sci-fi, but feels especially timely in our current landscape.

The Matrix (1999)

The Matrix
Genre Action, Science Fiction
Stars Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss
Directed by Lilly Wachowski, Lana Wachowski

The Wachowskis’ iconic cyberpunk, dystopian science fiction story The Matrix has been one of the most popular examples of its genre elements for almost 25 years now. Examining themes like existentialism, gender, and technological havoc, the film is still just as loved today as it was in 1999. Actors Keanu Reeves and Laurence Fishburne deliver career-defining performances in their roles. The movie has had three ensuing sequels, but none have been as acclaimed as this first one.

Predator (1987)

Genre Science Fiction, Action, Adventure, Thriller
Stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, Elpidia Carrillo
Directed by John McTiernan

Science fiction is one of the most versatile genres in film, and a great example of this is through the action classic The Predator. Fans are still enamored all these years later by the thrilling and fascinating ideas presented in this Arnold Schwarzenegger classic. This film spawned a franchise with four sequels along with video games and comic books.

Editors' Recommendations

Movie images and data from:
Shawn Laib
Shawn Laib is a freelance writer with publications such as Den of Geek,, Edge Media Network, diaTribe, SUPERJUMP…
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