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The 13 Best Silly Sci-Fi Movies to Watch with Your Friend Group

When masterpieces like Star Wars, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and Blade Runner have become tired rewatches for you and your friends, sometimes the best way to shake up movie night is with a hilarious (or hilariously bad) sci-fi spectacle like The Calamari Wrestler (yes, you read that right). Collected below are 13 of the silliest science fiction movies ever made, which are perfect for sharing with friends. Invite some friends, grab some beer, pull up a chair, and enjoy these fun flicks!


13 The Calamari Wrestler (2004)

The Calamari Wrestler
Klock Worx Co.

Starting off our silly sci-fi list with a SLAM! is the astoundingly entertaining kaiju parody film The Calamari Wrestler. Directed by Minoru Kawasaki, a Japanese director known for his satirical takes on the monster movie genre, the film tells the story of a professional wrestler who becomes a giant squid after being diagnosed with a terminal illness. Monster wrestling matches and melodrama ensue in a movie equal parts bizarre and charming. If you like Godzilla and other kaiju flicks, The Calamari Wrestler is sure to please with its unique spin on the genre.

Related: 9 of the Weirdest Japanese Horror Movies Ever Made, Ranked

12 The Toxic Avenger (1984)

The Toxic Avenger
Troma Entertainment

The Toxic Avenger is a classic trashterpiece about a nerdy janitor who, after becoming victim of a terrible prank-gone-wrong, winds up soaked in toxic waste. The sludge turns him from skinny loser to ripped, imposing monster, and leads him down the path to superherodom. The movie has an extremely silly tone, depicting an absurdist, crime-ridden world with a tone that takes nothing seriously. The action holds no bars, and as such it is a joy to watch Toxie tear his way through the bad guys in gory slapstick fashion. The film has three sequels which are equally fun, and a remake is reportedly on the way, starring Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage as the titular monster-hero.

11 The Ice Pirates (1984)

MGM / UA Entertainment Co

The Ice Pirates is a rip-roaring comedic space adventure about a pair of space pirates and a princess on a mission to track down a kidnaped king in a space-age future where water is the most valuable commodity in the universe. Part swashbuckling space saga, part low-rent B-picture, but chock-full of imagination, action, and humor, The Ice Pirates is an underrated sci-fi gem. The movie also features Ron Perlman in one of his earliest roles.

10 Time Bandits (1981)

The Time Bandits Avco Embassy Pictures
Avco Embassy Pictures

One of the best movies ever made about time travel, Time Bandits is about a young, history-obsessed boy who joins up with a group of time-traveling dwarves on their quest to steal treasures from various points in history. The lovable thieves visit the times of Napoleon, the Titanic, and Ancient Greece, among many others, and encounter all manner of historical figures and fantastic creatures along the way. Directed by Monty Python member and auteur filmmaker Terry Gilliam, the film melds comedy with science fiction and fantasy themes, and takes the viewer on a wild journey beyond imagination.

9 Mars Attacks! (1996)

Mars Attacks
Warner Bros. Pictures

Mars Attacks! is a classic Tim Burton movie about a Martian invasion of Earth. What begins as a seemingly peaceful visit with the extraterrestrials quickly goes South, as the aliens begin killing humans at random with no end goal other than total world domination in sight. As the United States’ military gears up for nuclear battle, a wacky cast of characters played by an assortment of the best talent of the time (Jack Nicholson, Pierce Brosnan, and Jack Black among them) bicker, battle, and boogie in their hilarious fight for survival against the Martians. According to Collider, Mars Attacks! is the “ultimate anti-blockbuster,” following an eclectic cast of “mostly unlikeable characters getting brutally murdered by an invading force of absurdist aliens.” In other words, it’s the anti-Independence Day, and it is glorious.

8 Bill and Ted Franchise

Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter in Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure
MGM / Orion Pictures

One of action star Keanu Reeves’ earliest and greatest films, Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure follows high school pals and aspiring rock stars Bill and Ted in an epic romp across time and space. In order to preserve a future in which their band is the basis for a utopian society, the two goofy guys must kidnap historical figures from various points in time and use them to create a perfect final history presentation. It’s two silly sequels are just as much fun as the first (Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey and Bill and Ted Face the Music), so why not try a Bill and Ted marathon next sci-fi movie night?

Related: Keanu Reeves Names Alex Winter as Favorite Co-Star: ‘Let’s Make Some More Bill & Ted’

7 Death Race 2000 (1975)

DEATH RACE 2000 New World Pictures
New World Pictures

Death Race 2000 is a Roger Corman-produced action classic about a totalitarian future in which the number one sport is the Transcontinental Road Race – a dangerous, high-speed motorsports event in which drivers score points by running over pedestrians. The protagonist is Frakenstein, a legendary and mysterious driver played by the inimitable David Carradine. Competing against him is a plethora of weirdo, blood-thirsty drivers, and things get complicated when a grass-roots effort to stop the race yields dire consequences. Death Race 2000 is a near-perfect B-movie; it’s trashy, fun, and quite silly, but it has a biting, satirical edge to it. The film also stars a very young Sylvester Stallone, and while it may not contain any “essential” Stallone moments, it’s hard to argue that this quote from the film isn’t one of the funniest of all time: “You know Myra, some people might think you’re cute. But me, I think you’re one very large baked potato.”

Related: Major Film Careers that Roger Corman Helped Create

6 Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959)

Plan 9 from Outer Space Valiant Pictures
Valiant Pictures

Famously hailed as one of the worst movies ever made, yet beloved by cult science fiction fans for being “so-bad-it’s-good,” Plan 9 from Outer Space depicts an alien invasion of Southern California. The aliens’ plan involves reviving the dead so that the zombies can assist in their bid for world domination. The movie is loaded with terrible performances and awful special effects, but no self-respecting sci-fi fan can deny its charm. Who could truly hate a movie starring Bela Lugosi and directed by the endearing B-movie king Ed Wood anyway?

5 Weird Science (1985)

Universal Pictures

Weird Science is a great sci-fi comedy about a pair of teenage goofballs who use a computer to model their ideal woman. When the computer unexpectedly short circuits, the model of a woman is brought to life as a real superwoman. The two boys’ ultimate dream becomes a reality, but hiding the woman’s existence is a nightmare. It’s a ridiculous premise taken to hilarious heights by ‘80s comedy mastermind John Hughes, and features great performances from the likes of Bill Paxton, Robert Downey Jr., Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Kelly LeBrock, and Anthony Michael Hall.

4 Barbarella (1968)

Paramount Pictures

Barbarella is the ultimate erotic space odyssey and a pulpy cheese classic that never gets old. It’s about a space explorer named Barbarella and her mission to save a scientist capable of preventing nuclear devastation from the clutches of evil. Along the way, Barbarella experiences many strange and often sexual customs native to the planets she visits. One of Jane Fonda’s most iconic movies, Barbarella is a very odd movie that is both highly artistic and extremely campy. Put it on for the sensual swingin’ sixties vibes and the laughs, keep it on for the gorgeous production design – or vice versa. Either way, the film is sure to be a riot with open-minded friends.

3 Repo Man (1984)

Universal Pictures

Repo Man is a punk rock classic and sci-fi oddity about a young slacker named Otto who finally finds a job that can keep him interested: repossessing cars. The fast-paced job takes a dangerous turn when word gets out to all the repo men that a neon-green Chevy Malibu is out there with a tempting $20,000 value attached. Otto makes it his mission to find the car, in the process teaming up with a UFO-hunter who believes the car to contain extraterrestrial materials. Repo Man is a clever and thought-provoking cult classic that jams in a lot of great jokes, thrilling action, and social commentary for its 92-minute runtime.

2 Dark Star (1974)

Bryanston Distributing Company

Dark Star is famed director John Carpenter’s debut film. It’s a spaced-out odyssey that examines the ridiculous exploits of a blue-collar astronaut team as they float about looking for uninhabitable planets to destroy. Things go hilariously wrong for the team when a beach ball-shaped alien enters their vessel and stirs up havoc, and one of their nuclear bombs has an existential breakdown. Dark Star is a cult-classic that is both a legitimately impressive space movie for its low, low budget, and a very funny comedy. It’s also a great watch for fans of the Alien franchise, as it was partially written by Alien writer Dan O’Bannon and essentially served as a dry-run for that film.

Related: Best John Carpenter Movies, Ranked

1 Starcrash (1978)

STARCRASH New World Pictures
New World Pictures

Starcrash is a hilariously corny Star Wars rip-off by Italian sleaze-maestro Luigi Cozzi. The film is about a space outlaw, played by cult icon Caroline Munro, who is tasked with defeating the evil Count Zarth Arn. It’s a low budget space saga that tries very hard to look as big and spectacular as Star Wars, but never quite sticks the landing. That’s not to say that the film is without merit, however; Starcrash, with all its horrible dialogue, bad dubbing, baffling plot points, cheap set design, and outlandish characters is quite possibly the most charming science fiction flop ever made. From its adorable stop-motion animation, to iconic lines like “Imperial Battleship, stop the flow of time!,” the film is guaranteed to win over even the most jaded of silly sci-fi connoisseurs. As eloquently put by The Guardian, “It is an apogee of trash brilliance unrivaled anywhere else in the galaxy.” Enough said.

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