The 1970's Science Fiction Movie Poll

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The 50's produced the classics but think the 70's produced the weirdest & most fatalistic nightmarish dystopian visions of the future, things you almost can't believe were bankrolled. I love even the worst of these films and the best of them I'm down for watching just about any of them at any given time.

Sorry if I missed any main ones, I was tempted to open this up a little more widely to the horror genre, as I can think of many films that belong side by side with these, but that might be a different 70's horror poll altogether.

Would be interested in anyone's POX / POV sublists within this list because there can't be only one -- i.e. we're leaving the blockbuster out.

Poll Results

OptionVotes
Alien8
Stalker 6
A Clockwork Orange 5
Invasion of the Body Snatchers 5
Solaris 5
Zardoz 2
A Boy and His Dog 2
Logan's Run 2
The Man Who Fell To Earth 2
Silent Running 2
Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind 1
The Stepford Wives 1
Demon Seed 1
Phase IV 1
Mad Max 1
The Andromeda Strain 1
Soylent Green 1
Colossus: The Forbin Project 1
God Told Me To 0
Star Trek: The Motion Picture 0
The Terminal Man 0
Parts: The Clonus Horror 0
Death Watch 0
Beneath the Planet of the Apes 0
The Omega Man 0
Future World 0
The Island of Dr. Moreau 0
THX-1138 0
Escape From The Planet of the Apes 0
Slaughterhouse-Five 0
Conquest Of The Planet of the Apes 0
Rollerball 0
Battle For The Planet of the Apes 0


Milton Parker, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:17 (twelve years ago) link

even just reading the titles, back to back, is TOO MUCH

oops! WestWorld

Milton Parker, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:20 (twelve years ago) link

what a decade. i can't possibly choose one. you are mad.

scott seward, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:21 (twelve years ago) link

Such a good decade.

I loved THX-1138 but hated all 938769234 Star Wars movies, wtf.

Autumn Almanac, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:30 (twelve years ago) link

we ought to do a '60s poll too (unless i missed it). alphaville and planet of the apes!

J.D., Friday, 25 January 2008 02:31 (twelve years ago) link

xpost I can't even pick only ten

And that was leaving out things I felt I couldn't get away with, like It's Alive or The Boys From Brazil

I almost left out Death Watch as it's not really SF in mood but then I'm all 'Wait a minute it's a future where disease has been eliminated & so sick people are stalked for reality shows by Harvey Keitel who has had his eye replaced by a broadcasting TV camera' and well yes it really does belong on the list

Milton Parker, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:32 (twelve years ago) link

I think I have to say Logan's Run why bcause Jenny Agutter look intersting AND VERY HOTTT.

Rock Hardy, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:37 (twelve years ago) link

I've seen surprisingly few of these.

Rock Hardy, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:38 (twelve years ago) link

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/173/372402940_1362c6c1cd_o.png

El Tomboto, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:50 (twelve years ago) link

but I voted for COLOSSUS THE FORBIN PROJECT because it needs more love

El Tomboto, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:50 (twelve years ago) link

OH JENNY BE MINE PANT PANT PANT
(I think this was the 3rd or 4th movie I saw in a theater.)

Rock Hardy, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:57 (twelve years ago) link

I just saw God Told Me To last night. So good.

tokyo rosemary, Friday, 25 January 2008 03:20 (twelve years ago) link

So many great movies! But one has David Bowie, so...

Nicole, Friday, 25 January 2008 03:24 (twelve years ago) link

Maybe not a scifi film in the Star Trek kind of sense, but a I think Woody Allen's Sleeper is a fun movie from the 70s.

I just want to know why the Scifi network can play Manisaur 3 to 9 every weekend and never play this kind of good older stuff? Is it too expensive, does no one really want to watch these movies?

earlnash, Friday, 25 January 2008 03:39 (twelve years ago) link

haha I also used that zardoz pic for another ad-hoc album cover

El Tomboto, Friday, 25 January 2008 03:41 (twelve years ago) link

I never realized how good a diaper + suspenders can look.

Rock Hardy, Friday, 25 January 2008 03:41 (twelve years ago) link

sci-fi doesn't have the rights to this stuff. plus showing the golden oldies would just remind everybody how much their regular programming eats dong

El Tomboto, Friday, 25 January 2008 03:41 (twelve years ago) link

An online resource where you could type in a movie title and find out who has the broadcast rights to it -- that would be sweet.

Rock Hardy, Friday, 25 January 2008 03:49 (twelve years ago) link

I hope God Told Me To gets a few votes, but I had to rep for Invasion of Donald Sutherland's Gaping Mouth.

Eric H., Friday, 25 January 2008 03:58 (twelve years ago) link

Damned impressive list, great post Milton. I actually gotta back Tombot up on his choice because Forbin still has some of the bluntest, creepiest stuff I've ever seen. The bit where the two guys are taken out and executed right then and there freaked the hell out of me at twelve or however old it was when I first saw it on TV.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 25 January 2008 04:01 (twelve years ago) link

man, these are all so good. the ones i've seen anyway (maybe three quarters?)

Top 5:
Alien
A Boy & His Dog
Beneath The Planet Of The Apes
Solaris
Close Encounters (big impression on me when i first saw it, age 8 or 9.)

ian, Friday, 25 January 2008 04:47 (twelve years ago) link

god, invasion of the body snatchers is so good too. and mad max. and soylent green, and logan's run.

ones i need to see the most:
slaughterhouse five (is this perhaps the only vonnegut adaptation that people rate? the ones i've seen all blow hard.)
zardoz.
andromeda strain.

ian, Friday, 25 January 2008 04:49 (twelve years ago) link

Boy & His Dog is so fucking bonkers, esp. the mime makeup country fair underground colony!

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 04:49 (twelve years ago) link

I am so scared to watch Slaughterhouse Five, for fear it will suck, or that they will really mess up the Tralfamidorians.

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 04:50 (twelve years ago) link

I just watched beneath the planet of the apes the other night. the scene where the ape city army marching through the desert encounters a field of squirming apes crucified upside-down in flames while in the background an enormous statue of the lawgiver begins bleeding from his eyes is like a halfstep from jodorowsky-level wtf.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y176/edwardiii/beneath-the-planet-of-the-apes.jpg

and the ending is so hardcore! how the fuck did that movie get made?

Edward III, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:32 (twelve years ago) link

and as much as this poll rocks there is no cronenberg here so I must call foul

Edward III, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:42 (twelve years ago) link

no surprise which i voted for!

latebloomer, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:43 (twelve years ago) link

I think everything Cronenberg made in the '70s wld be 'horror,' but 'Shivers' really gets discussed considerably in parasiology books and (sometimes) journal articles!

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:44 (twelve years ago) link

# Shivers (1975)
# Rabid (1977)
# Fast Company (1979)
# The Brood (1979)

Fast Company is a car racing movie!

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:46 (twelve years ago) link

parasitology that is; I misspelled one of my truest fancies

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:49 (twelve years ago) link

I dunno, cronenberg's clinical fascination with biohorror... always struck me as sci-fi.

Edward III, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:53 (twelve years ago) link

Naw, I can dig. When it comes to categorizing things by genre, I just go with where you'd find them in a video rental store. (This gets me a lot of hate-ons in Scattegories).

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:55 (twelve years ago) link

it's a crime that phase iv is still not on dvd

Edward III, Friday, 25 January 2008 05:56 (twelve years ago) link

Fantastic list! Only other movies I'd add to the list would be No Blade Of Grass and The Final Programme, but both of those only marginally fit (NBOG is superseded by Mad Max, and TFP doesn't get the ridiculousness of Moorcock down)

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 25 January 2008 06:24 (twelve years ago) link

Demon Seed gave a serious case of the bonkers. Utterly user-unfriendly movie. I would vote that for my #1 if I hadn't committed to Mad Max.

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 25 January 2008 06:28 (twelve years ago) link

I have added like 15 things to my netflx thanks to this thread.

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 06:28 (twelve years ago) link

In terms of design and execution Alien has to be up at the top. Some of the earth-bound near-future dystopias here might be thoroughly convincing, but Alien is so much more ambitious, and pulls it off in spades.

ledge, Friday, 25 January 2008 09:37 (twelve years ago) link

But aside from that... Phase IV and The Man Who Fell to Earth are both firm faves. Only seen THX once, would like to give that another go.

ledge, Friday, 25 January 2008 09:39 (twelve years ago) link

I voted for Stalker, which is a great film, but I guess the real reason it got my vote is because I'm currently reading the Strugatsky brothers book it's loosely based on - Roadside Picnic.

treefell, Friday, 25 January 2008 09:39 (twelve years ago) link

I think I have to say Logan's Run why bcause Jenny Agutter look intersting AND VERY HOTTT.

-- Rock Hardy, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:37

OTM.

Great list, nearly impossible to choose only one film (I feel sad not voting for so many great films in an ilx-poll, how sad is that?), but I'm going with Stalker as well.

Le Bateau Ivre, Friday, 25 January 2008 11:28 (twelve years ago) link

Seen embarrasingly few of these, so I was lame and voted for Alien (which is really more an 80s movie in terms of style).

chap, Friday, 25 January 2008 13:08 (twelve years ago) link

Logan's Run is so fucking hilarious.

Abbott, Friday, 25 January 2008 16:38 (twelve years ago) link

Yeah, that robot towards the end is so goofy.

What's the name of that film where they fake the Mars landing and try to kill the astronauts? I think OJ Simpson's in it.

chap, Friday, 25 January 2008 16:43 (twelve years ago) link

Capricorn One

Ned Raggett, Friday, 25 January 2008 16:44 (twelve years ago) link

aside from the two Tarkovskys, I would go with the good interstellar guest / bad interstellar guest polarity of Close Encounters and
Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Slaughterhouse-5 is fine but I don't really think of its SF elements as anything but window dressing. (ian, I like the film of Breakfast of Champions with Willis, Nolte and Finney.)

Dr Morbius, Friday, 25 January 2008 16:45 (twelve years ago) link

Wait, where the fuck is Dark Star? Love that film.

chap, Friday, 25 January 2008 16:47 (twelve years ago) link

Not sure if I understand the rationale for leaving out Star Wars. Looking at this list, I realize that I've seen a lot more '80s sci-fi than '70s.

o. nate, Friday, 25 January 2008 16:58 (twelve years ago) link

Star Wars is space opera, ie really an Arthurian / Western / samurai film. Just like Alien is a (boring) haunted-house film set in space.

Dr Morbius, Friday, 25 January 2008 17:00 (twelve years ago) link

^ controversial

DG, Friday, 25 January 2008 17:01 (twelve years ago) link

my cousin has the japanese alien set

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y176/edwardiii/alienquadrilogyhead.jpg

Edward III, Friday, 26 September 2008 18:45 (eleven years ago) link

one month passes...

not even one vote for Beneath the Planet of the Apes. saw that again -- that's my favorite one by far. once you get to the underground city...

finally saw Fassbinder's one science fiction film 'World On A Wire' from 1973. Loved it. Are there any earlier virtual reality films?

http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a6/Sprad/WorldOnAWire2.jpg

Milton Parker, Tuesday, 11 November 2008 22:54 (eleven years ago) link

the new bluray planet of the apes set has the original cut of conquest of the planet of the apes, the version that studio heads demanded be cut lest it get an R rating and/or incite actual rioting in the streets.

goddamn, they really want me to buy a bluray player, don't they?

Edward III, Thursday, 20 November 2008 21:41 (eleven years ago) link

three months pass...

Martian Chronicles - 1979 TV mini-series - far less kitschy than I was expecting. screenplay by Richard Matheson! the space effects are terrible, but whenever the martian cities & outfits hit the screen I was tempted to just pause and stare at them -- I wanted to live there. (tried to find a screenshot of the Martian Mask of Conflict, but blogs are sleeping). the anti-colonial themes are front and center, not glossed over at all, and the scene where the psychic empath martian gets stuck with the Missionary and is thusly forced into the shape of a wounded Jesus, and he's in agony trying to talk the priest into looking away before he bleeds to death - that is an amazing scene, especially for broadcast 70's television. I wasn't expecting this one to fit with the other US 70's science fiction films, but it absolutely does, it's as bleak and dystopian and fatalistic as the rest of them

also saw the 1972 East German 'Eolomea'. it's just as swinging & psychedelic as 'In The Dust of the Stars', but also more serious in tone. I liked it, though it doesn't click with the Western dystopias, in fact in East Germany they couldn't call them Science Fiction films, to distinguish them they would call them 'Utopian films', and that's accurate -- the two I've seen are proscripted cheerleading. http://www.dvdverdict.com/reviews/eolomea.php

Milton Parker, Monday, 23 February 2009 21:16 (eleven years ago) link

three months pass...

Das Millionenspiel - 1970

Reality TV Show where contestants win one million deutschmark if they can evade three assassins for one week, while the world watches coverage via 20 mobile film crews

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0066079/

Seems like a made for TV reiteration of The 10th Victim which I remember being good campy fun, but maybe worth checking out, and obviously still way ahead of its time, plus music by Can

Milton Parker, Thursday, 11 June 2009 21:07 (ten years ago) link

two years pass...

whoah

http://io9.com/5877874/lost-films

Hu-Man (1975)

An actor (Terence Stamp, playing himself) is placed in a series of dangerous situations, while his fear is broadcast to the television audience. Their emotional reactions will determine whether he is sent into the future, or the past. Directed by Jérôme Laperrousaz and co-starring Jeanne Moreau, Hu-Man won the Trieste Festival of Science Fiction Films in 1976, but has strangely fallen into obscurity, and apparently no prints are available.

Milton Parker, Thursday, 9 February 2012 08:43 (eight years ago) link

yes! i read that too! wish it were available

sarahell, Thursday, 9 February 2012 08:53 (eight years ago) link

one month passes...

posting this to watch later: Idaho Transfer

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MXxzzpGF7O8

Milton Parker, Thursday, 29 March 2012 21:32 (eight years ago) link

one month passes...

liked Idaho Transfer a lot. perhaps one of the lowest budget films on this entire list, but it doesn't matter; point a camera at those volcanic plains & the Idaho landscape, set it to an acoustic guitar & analog synth soundtrack and it is easy to believe that civilization has ended everywhere

and the ending is RIDICULOUS.

we should run this poll again sometime. it's missing a bunch of important ones, and some of them are finding wider audiences.

Milton Parker, Sunday, 27 May 2012 06:57 (eight years ago) link

tried to find a screenshot of the Martian Mask of Conflict, but...

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_5Qcl1S1MdQQ/SPZihzUViZI/AAAAAAAAMrE/hfqfUpOb3Co/s1600/bscap0019la1.jpg

Milton Parker, Sunday, 27 May 2012 09:20 (eight years ago) link

Peregrine: "2000 years we waited for your return. And now I am the one who sees you, and hears you speaking."

Martian Jesus: "You see nothing but your own dream ... your own needs. Beneath all this I am another thing."

Peregrine: "What am I to do?"

Martian Jesus: "Look away from me, and in that moment I'll be gone. Halt, or you'll kill me!"

Peregrine: "Or I'll kill you?"

Martian Jesus: "If you force me into this guise much longer, I will die. This is more than I can hold."

Father Peregrine and 'Jesus' exchange inaudible whispers.

Peregrine: "And I have made you like this with my thoughts."

Martian Jesus: "You came into the church. You looked at the crucifix. Your old dream of meeting him seized you once again. Seized me. My body still bleeds from the wounds you gave me with your secret mind."

Peregrine: "…Oh, my sweet God …. Go, before I keep you here forever."

Milton Parker, Sunday, 27 May 2012 09:28 (eight years ago) link

whatever you think of the crimes of george lucas it is silly that thx placed so low

the late great, Sunday, 27 May 2012 21:19 (eight years ago) link

well based on your posts Martian Mask of Conflict looks amazing but unfortunately the only Google result for it is, uh, this thread

Roger Barfing (Shakey Mo Collier), Monday, 28 May 2012 14:07 (eight years ago) link

It's from The Martian Chronicles, Shakey

Ian Hunter Is Learning the Game (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 28 May 2012 14:46 (eight years ago) link

I mean I'm assuming you thought it was the title of some separate movie, which I did for a split second

Ian Hunter Is Learning the Game (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 28 May 2012 14:49 (eight years ago) link

hmmm, apparently The Martian Chronicles DVD is still in print over here but The Silver Locusts isn't, tho it's easy enough to get a used copy.

Cyders from Mars (Noodle Vague), Monday, 28 May 2012 14:49 (eight years ago) link

sorry, meant to say the orig Ray Bradbury book (Silver Locusts) isn't. anyway they're both well worth having iirc

Cyders from Mars (Noodle Vague), Monday, 28 May 2012 14:50 (eight years ago) link

watched the martian chronicles dvd again recently. loved the rocket prop but the whole thing didn't live up to my memories or the book.

koogs, Monday, 28 May 2012 14:54 (eight years ago) link

Zardoz 2

;_;

Boris Kutyurkokhov (Eisbaer), Monday, 28 May 2012 19:41 (eight years ago) link

ah thx read the book, never bothered with any screen adaptations

Roger Barfing (Shakey Mo Collier), Tuesday, 29 May 2012 00:45 (eight years ago) link

wow

Roger Barfing (Shakey Mo Collier), Wednesday, 30 May 2012 23:10 (eight years ago) link

awesome

the late great, Wednesday, 30 May 2012 23:12 (eight years ago) link

i think i'm going to watch barbarella again

is CQ any good?

the late great, Wednesday, 30 May 2012 23:13 (eight years ago) link

not really

Roger Barfing (Shakey Mo Collier), Wednesday, 30 May 2012 23:13 (eight years ago) link

I kind of liked it, but I know I was in the minority

Ian Hunter Is Learning the Game (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 30 May 2012 23:17 (eight years ago) link

it's not a patch on Barbarella that's for sure

Roger Barfing (Shakey Mo Collier), Wednesday, 30 May 2012 23:24 (eight years ago) link

CQ is charming but not a must see. Soundtrack is alright.

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 31 May 2012 02:48 (eight years ago) link

That's a good description

Ian Hunter Is Learning the Game (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 31 May 2012 02:52 (eight years ago) link

one month passes...

haha, this is my 2nd google search result for "ken middleham ants"

nicest bitch of poster (La Lechera), Tuesday, 17 July 2012 17:58 (seven years ago) link

two years pass...

Perhaps of interest as a compare/contrast

http://www.rollingstone.com/movies/lists/50-best-sci-fi-movies-of-the-1970s-20150114

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 14 January 2015 18:11 (five years ago) link

I can think of a whole lot of films that didn't make the list better than most of their bottom 20 -- first third of this list makes the decade look a lot more wretched than it has to (though I hadn't even heard of 'welcome to blood city')

putting phase iv in the top 10 though, all is forgiven

Milton Parker, Wednesday, 14 January 2015 18:54 (five years ago) link

Whoa @ lost ending. I guess there were probably a bunch of other majorly cut parts throughout... still manages to be awesome, though.

emil.y, Sunday, 25 January 2015 15:13 (five years ago) link

Re-watched this today - love the sci fi update of 'Leiningen Versus the Ants.' Thanks for posting lost ending - it's great!

BlackIronPrison, Sunday, 25 January 2015 22:29 (five years ago) link

ten months pass...

http://www.amc.com/video-extras/dark-star

^^ "dark star" available to watch free on line

the late great, Monday, 30 November 2015 22:19 (four years ago) link

was really disappointed when I finally got around to watching that

Οὖτις, Monday, 30 November 2015 22:23 (four years ago) link

why?

the late great, Monday, 30 November 2015 22:49 (four years ago) link

because it's terrible? It isn't particularly funny, mostly it feels like a bad episode of Dr. Who

Οὖτις, Monday, 30 November 2015 22:55 (four years ago) link

that 70s Tom Baker era jankiness and ambling pace

Οὖτις, Monday, 30 November 2015 22:56 (four years ago) link

love that movie. its a perfect movie to just hang out with.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Monday, 30 November 2015 23:02 (four years ago) link

seven months pass...

Watched The Final Programme a few days ago, I'm kind of surprised this hasn't gotten a rerelease from Drafthouse or something. Hard for me to remember a film that reached an equally high level of entertainment and incomprehensibility.

JoeStork, Tuesday, 26 July 2016 21:32 (three years ago) link

The sight gag with the freezer crammed full of McVities was amazing.

JoeStork, Tuesday, 26 July 2016 21:33 (three years ago) link

The sight gag with the freezer crammed full of McVities was amazing.

JoeStork, Tuesday, 26 July 2016 21:33 (three years ago) link

one year passes...

Emerged. Haven't watched yet. Will soon if this proto-reality TV trope is in the leagues of 'Death Watch' or 'Year of the Sex Olympics' or just a slightly artier 'Das Millionenspiel' revamp.

Hu-Man, 1975, Terence Stamp, Jeanne Moreau

An actor is placed in dangerous situations and his fear will be broadcast to the television audience. The audience’s emotions will determine whether he is sent into the future or the past.

https://letterboxd.com/film/hu-man/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VdvXZAPJkm0

Milton Parker, Saturday, 12 May 2018 23:40 (two years ago) link

two weeks pass...

well gosh. odd even for 1970's SF. one wonders what the shooting script could have looked like after the first third. definitely not for the impatient. definitely for people who like to wonder how films like this end up getting made. almost hilariously interminable, but ultimately that is by design. this youtube is a VHS transfer of the 87 minute TV edit, there's a version out there with another 20 minutes, can't even imagine

music credited to Eric Burdon, Tim Blake (of Gong / Hawkwind), David Horowitz, and, somehow, Patrick Vian -- not clear if they're collaborating or swapping off, the ballad at the beginning is clearly Eric Burdon but is that also him doing all the acapella screaming at the end? almost sounds like it could be but whatever it is, it's a riot. sounds like friends in Paris with a lot of gear deciding to record an all night jam session instead of going home after checking out the 1972 Taj Mahal Travellers concert

Milton Parker, Thursday, 31 May 2018 07:40 (two years ago) link

four months pass...

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