The 2010 movie "Skyline" features a host of alien invaders with nothing more on their minds than eating humanity. Seem familiar? Probably. If you need your alien invasion fix addressed before then, or after, check out these 10 movies to tide you over.
10. District 9 (2009)
An invasion of a different kind of alien, but a really cool-looking bunch of creatures anyway. They were thick, they were ugly and they had some serious firepower. A movie that worked as allegory and escapism, it asked what would happen if the need our help, and how would we treat them if they asked
9. Signs (2002)
Okay, okay, I know it wasn't great, and the ending made me want to punch someone (sorry AMC staff-lady who was nice enough not to press charges), but taking the alien invasion genre and focusing down to the level of a single family instead of saving the world has it's bonuses. Scary aliens creeping around your house late at night and trapping you in your basement is not a lot of fun for the kids.
8. The Hidden (1987)
An alien takes over humans and uses them as a convenient hiding place. Add another alien who has come to find the bad-one, and it's an alien vs alien hide and seek with humanity as little more than something that gets in the way. Not a real invasion, but it's got a flamethrower. Bonus!
7. War of the Worlds (2005)
Yeah, yeah, it had Tom Cruise and the spaceships came up from the ground (what?), but besides all that, there were some terrific takes on the alien invasion genre. Like what? How about the feeling that the you're gonna get turned to dust and there's nothing you can do about it? Or spending an evening in a basement with an insane Tim Robbins? Both pretty creepy.
6. Independence Day (1996)
Yes, the movie plays like a child's retelling of half-seen movies from late-night television, what with clichÃ©-ridden characters (if they wear glasses, they're scientists) and the seemingly endless slack-jawed stares at the huge spaceships. But man, what huge ships. The movie also featured the first time Will Smith punched an alien in the face and uttered a pithy quip.
5. The Arrival (1996)
If any of you global warming deniers out there are still in doubt, all you have to do is watch this movie to become convinced. After all, who could hatch a plot so diabolical as to heat the earth to searing-hot temperatures by spewing massive amounts of carbon emissions into the atmosphere to trap the sun's ray's and terraform the plant into something much hotter? Aliens, that's who.
4. Predator (1987)
If you haven't seen it already, you need to run and get to da choppa! Seriously though, go get it now. An invasion by a single, really, really angry alien, Predator was scary and awesome in a way that has rarely been seem before or since. Though it spawned some bad sequels or prequels or whoever cares what they were, this 1987 movie featured a pre-governer Arnold Schwarzeneger, a pre-governer Jessie Ventura and a pre-president Predator. Okay, the Predator hasn't been elected president, but it's 2010. How long can it be before it happens?
3. They Live (1988)
Number three because of "I've come here to chew bubble gum, and kick a**. And I'm all outta gum." Sure, wrestler turnedâ€¦actor?â€¦Rowdy Roddy Piper didn't do a heck of a lot in this movie other than stare at stuff and shoot aliens, but that's pretty much all you need, isn't it? That, and the movie's decidedly anti-consumerist theme still hits a little too close to home in recent years.
2. The Thing (1982)
I saw this movie when I was way too young and it ruined me for life. Apart from the endless paranoia, the never knowing who is an alien and who isn't and the waiting until the alien kills you, there's the dog-creature with umpteen heads and the head of the guy that sprouts legs and walks away. Oh yeah, then there's the guy's chest that collapses in the middle of CPR and eats the other guy's hands andâ€¦oh just go watch it already.
1. War of the Worlds (1953)
Yes, it's old. No, it isn't the Orson Welles radio version, nor H.G. Wells book version, but it's the alien invasion movie against which all others are measured. Creepy aliens, military retaliation, society in chaosâ€¦it has all the elements you need for a good end-of-the-world time. And boy is it a good time.
(Photo courtesy Markusraum on flickr.)