Ranking The Best Alien Abduction Movies of All Time.
Hidden in the bonkers new cycle of the last few years was the nugget that the Pentagon has been quietly gathering data around UFO sightings. They have even released a video of a UFO sighting check it out here. While Fox Mulder is writing his I told you so letter to everyone else, we here at Signal are wondering just like you what this will mean for the future of aliens in pop culture. No longer will people be secretly kidnapped and probed. I know that will be a huge disappointment to some people but don’t fret the government is on it (LOL). Now the government will know all about these choice encounters. Hell the government may be the ones doing it in the future. To celebrate this new found era of UFO openness we offer up the five best alien abduction movies. Perhaps these will act as blueprints for our alien interactions in the future.
5. Dark Skies (2013)
Dark Skies does a wonderful job of reminding us that if it is true and we are not alone in the universe there is a high likelihood our interstellar guests will be far from benevolent. In a movie that borrows elements from your typical haunted house film, Dark Skies does a wonderful job allowing the movie to build at a slower pace. The payoff at the end of the slow burn is both terrifying and deeply unsettling. Dark Skies is not your typical alien abduction film but blends both the horror and sci-fi genres quite well. Both Keri Russel and J.K. Simmons do a lot with their roles which make this film pretty fun to watch. In retrospect, our new found alien buddies probably have more important things to do with their time than to screw with random people in their homes but hey man maybe aliens still ding dong ditch if they get bored.
4. Fire in the Sky (1993) Be warned the clip below is ROUGH!
Admittedly this was one of the first alien movies I saw in the theatre. The experimentation scenes in this film scared the shit out of me when I was 13 and they still stick with me. The idea that someone can operate on your eyes and teeth against your will still gives me fits of panic. This is the first time the world of alien cinema explores anal probing as well. I also think looking at this movie in retrospect it bares some similarities to the current sexual harassment scandals that are sweeping the country. Travis Walton (The main character) has a ton of corroborating physical evidence about his abuse but people still do not believe him. Despite the incredibly graphic operation scenes in the beginning, this movie turns into your typical “do we believe this crazy guy or not” type of alien abduction film.
3. Honeymoon (2014)
Marriage can be terrifying. Particularly when it is brand new and both people are still figuring stuff out. So most newly married couples take a really fun trip right after their wedding to help them ease into marriage. The honeymoon is itself supposed to be wonderful and sexy and full of excitement. Honeymoon, the movie, is not any of those. Rather it poses the question; What if we truly didn’t know who we were marrying? This is not a movie about existential dread or about the complications of intimacy but rather it’s way more simple than that. Honeymoon posits, what if you married an alien and she wants to eat you. This movie has some truly creepy moments but lacks a compelling protagonist so at the end of the film, you honestly think maybe the new husband may be asking for what happens to him. I mean if we all acted like him you wouldn’t blame the aliens if they took over.
2. Under the Skin (2013)
Scarlet Johannson was absolutely born to play this role. Her character in this film feels deeply alien but at the same time, the sexuality she exudes feels uniquely human. Almost as if her sexuality is the web she spins to attract young men into her lair. That is essentially all this film does for a significant portion of the film. It lays the groundwork for abduction and subsequent feedings while at the same time builds intrigue around Johannson’s character. We see Johannson’s character pick up unsuspecting men and take them back to her otherworldly apartment where she devours them. In the final act, we see some greater character development and the film transforms into something much bigger and better than your typical creature feature. Under the Skin is beautifully made and unlike some of the others on this list is perfectly content asking a lot of questions that never get answered. It revels in its art and uses the typical alien abduction film as its canvas.
1. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
This is the prototypical alien movie. What amazes me still is just how well Speilberg can turn this movie from a frightening alien abduction thriller into a hopeful message about communicating with aliens from another planet. The main character that spends time with the aliens before the big reveal is a three old. As a parent this is terrifying. An alien life form that is far more powerful than anything we have ever seen takes a liking to our children. I mean sometimes I feel like I might give the two year old to the aliens if they asked nice but mostly those moments pass quickly. To make this even worse in Close Encounters, people in power do not believe that these things are happening and shun those who do as lunatics. This movie sets up the trope that alien abductees are kooks that everyone else is distrustful of. It also has an amazingly hopeful ending which the others on this list cannot boast.
2020 has taught us a lot. It seems one of the last lessons it will teach us will be that we are not alone. Make of that what you will. Perhaps those aliens that visited us a few years ago have taken a look at the state of things this year and have decided to can the whole thing and go back to where they came from. Honestly, can you blame them?
Which of the best alien abduction movies would make your list? Let us know by commenting here, on Facebook, or on Twitter. Make sure you join the thousands of people who stay updated by liking our page on Facebook. After all, the truth is out there.
Tyler has been the editor in chief of Signal Horizon since its conception. He is also the Director of Monsters 101 at Truman State University a class that pairs horror movie criticism with survival skills to help middle and high school students learn critical thinking. When he is not watching, teaching or thinking about horror he is the Director of Debate and Forensics at a high school in Kansas City, Missouri.