2017 was full of great films, and excellent genre movies came fast and furious. While not all of them were fantastic, we definitely had more than a few classics join the ranks of movies that we’re sure to revisit for years to come.
With genre comes science fiction, and with sci-fi comes, of course, space. There wasn’t a surplus of “space movies” in 2017, but what we did get was masterful.
Prepare for launch, punch it, and saddle up A-holes…here is our list of the 4 best space movies of 2017.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi
We can sit here and debate the endless supply of riches that this movie dumps on the world of Star Wars until we’re blue in the face, but we won’t. Yes, the film gives Luke Skywalker an insanely powerful scene with which to shuffle off his Jedi coil. Yes, Daisy Ridley’s Rey continues to be a delight. But the Holdo Maneuver. The Holdo Maneuver where Laura Dern’s Amilyn Holdo wins the whole movie with one space-tastic sacrifice. It is like nothing we’ve ever seen in a space movie (or any movie) before, and it never ceases to amaze us.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
James Gunn keeps the space crazy rolling in this MCU entry that keeps us all hooked on a feeling. At its heart, this is a father and son story between both Peter Quill and Ego the Living Planet and Peter and his “found father” Yondu. That’s the heart of the film, but the wacky space antics keep rollin'. Besides such things are the aforementioned sentient planet, you have a race of gold-skinned beings that fight with arcade-like drones, a truly touching space funeral, and a jump sequence through multiple sectors that gave us some of the weirdest visuals in any MCU film.
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
This Luc Besson film channels the space-weirdness of his classic The Fifth Element and ratchets it all way up past eleven. We were curious to see what such a visionary filmmaker like Besson would do with a space movie that could use the best of all of the modern filmmaking tools, and the result is a gorgeous, star-drunk romp, with aliens and creatures bursting out of every frame. The space-action comes on fast and fun, and Cara Delevigne steals the entire movie as Laureline, Valerian’s partner. Rihanna also has a sequence that, well…it’s only something that a Luc Besson space movie would have.
The previous film set in the Alien universe, Prometheus, was beautiful…but frustrating for a number of reasons. This film mostly paid off the narrative debts of that film, but also gave us a satisfying adventure all on its own. Yes, most of the film takes place on a planet full of colonists, but its roots are set in space. Michael Fassbender’s David is back, and so is another android of his model! They get to play the flute together (among other things), but Danny McBride and Katherine Waterston steal the show. The former gives a surprisingly serious performance, while Waterston channels her inner Ripley and leads the proceedings with all of the grit and determination that we could ask for.