The Top 40 Sci-Fi Movies of the 21st Century

From space-invader thrillers to interstellar-overdrive headscratchers, we're counting down the best science fiction films since the turn of the century

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'Guardians of the Galaxy' (2014)
Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Rocket (voice: Bradley Cooper), Zoe Saldana, Groot Everett Collection34/40

34. 'Guardians of the Galaxy' (2014)

Superhero movies may be a zeitgeist-defining genre in and of themselves, but most of these colorful characters and concepts have straight-up science-fiction roots. This was never more clear than in the Marvel Cinematic Universe's elaborate homage to the rollicking space operas of yesteryear. As a veteran of the Troma sci-fi schlock factory, co-writer/director James Gunn kept the action properly boisterous, the aliens suitably weird (go ahead, say it: "I AM GROOT"), and the tone fun and frothy. A star-making performance from Chris Pratt as displaced human space-pirate Peter "Starlord" Quill and a cast of crazy characters previously relegated to the margins of Marvel comics sure didn't hurt, either. STC

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