Can You Complete These Sci-Fi Movie Titles?

Olivia Cantor

Image: Lucasfilm, Twentieth Century Fox

About This Quiz

Even though there are film snobs who think little of sci-fi as a genre, they really can't detach it from the history of film itself. That's because the very first narrative film ever made was a sci-fi film. Did you know that? Now you do!

When cinema came about as a new technology back in the late 1800s, the first scenes shot and showcased in public were documentary snippets. French cinema inventors Auguste and Louis Lumière believed in shooting daily life and used their film camera invention as an extended form of photography. Instead of still life photos, we now have moving pictures of everyday scenes.

But another French innovator, Georges Méliès, thought of incorporating theatrical elements into film in the early 1900s. Thus, production design was born, along with costume and set design, acting for film, editing, and special cinematographic effects. But above all that, cinematic storytelling was born when Méliès championed the use of cinema as a new storytelling tool. And his first story? A short sci-fi film called "Le Voyage dans la Lune" or "A Trip to the Moon." This shows that, with new innovations and technologies, humans always think bigger and shoot for the moon, so to speak! 

To honor Méliès and the innovators who came after him, here's a cool sci-fi film quiz for you. By omitting one word from the title, can you guess the film? Experiment and tinker away!

"Mad Max: __ Road" came back without Mel Gibson. Which feeling took the ride?

If you feel that "Mad Max: Fury Road" had a strong feminist vibe in it, that's because creator-director George Miller solicited Eve Ensler's advice and guidance. Ensler created the episodic play "The Vagina Monologues" full of topics that paralleled the film's concerns like female subjugation.

In "Back to the __," where did our heroes time-travel in the second sequel?

If there's an element of time-traveling and talk of time machines in a story, that's definitely science fiction lore. Even if "Back to the Future" felt more like a suburban comedy at times, it's still legit sci-fi with a humorous bent.

"____ in the Shell" scared us with which concept?

"Ghost in the Shell" produced quite an uproar with anime fans upon learning that a white woman would portray the original Japanese character. In film history, the term used for this practice is "whitewashing." The 2017 live-action version starred Scarlett Johansson in the lead.

When did "Edge of __" schedule us for repeat showings?

"Edge of Tomorrow" shows Emily Blunt's versatility as an actress since she played a strong woman warrior character in this 2014 sci-fi film. It's a far cry from playing a fashion magazine assistant in the 2006 comedy "The Devil Wears Prada."

"Ready __ One" had which kind of participant?

"Ready Player One" mixes sci-fi past and future in today's reimagined world. It featured heavy references to pop culture entertainment from the past four decades while projecting a story set in a dystopian future. The story came from the New York Times bestselling YA novel of the same title.

"Men in __" wore suits of which shade?

The first three "Men In Black" films featured Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones as the leads, starting from the original 1997 film up to the second sequel in 2012. The 2019 spinoff "Men in Black: International" features a different cast but Emma Thompson returns as Agent O along with Frank the Pug.

If "2001: A __ Odyssey" is sci-fi, where in the universe did it take place?

Science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke developed the script of "2001: A Space Odyssey" closely with its director Stanley Kubrick. Originally based on his short story, Clarke also wrote a popular 1968 novel-length version of it while writing the film's screenplay. He also released a sequel in 1982.

"__ of the Worlds" had creatures waging which action at each other?

Sci-fi writer H.G. Wells came up with "War of the Worlds" back in 1898 and Steven Spielberg did a loose film adaptation of it in 2005. Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning starred as a father-daughter tandem here.

"Close Encounters of the __ Kind" ranked aliens how many times?

In UFO lore, there are three suggested types of encounters, with the first being mere sightings and the second involving physical manifestations of the sighting. The film "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" detailed the third type which involves interaction with a creature from within the UFO.

"The Truman __" made a spectacle out of what entertainment form?

The 1998 sci-fi film "The Truman Show" predated mainstream pop culture's fascination with reality TV as it featured an unsuspecting human starring in his own 24/7 reality show. This voyeuristic spectatorship style became a normalized format with the advent of the "Big Brother" TV concept.

"Planet of the __" let us cohabit with which creature?

French novelist Pierre Boulle authored the books where the films "The Bridge on the River Kwai" and "Planet of the Apes" came from. The 1963 dystopian novel came to life as a film in 1968 starring Charlton Heston as an astronaut who lands on a planet ruled by intelligent talking apes.

"__ Report" filed what kind of documentation?

Aside from featuring a popular sci-fi author's story, "Minority Report" also featured $25 million worth of brand exposures via product placement. For a fee, filmmakers seamlessly integrate products or brands like Gap and Nokia within the storyline to make them appear as natural parts of the film.

"The __ Games" made us experience which unsatisfactory feeling?

The sci-fi young adult novel "The Hunger Games" featured a dystopian world divided into 12 districts controlled by elite forces. We hear the story unfold through Katniss Everdeen's narration of events and feelings. However, the 2012 film adaptation didn't have any similar narration.

The creatures in "Invasion of the __ Snatchers" stole what type of loot?

Film scholars observed that many '50s era sci-fi films, often those made with lower studio budgets, contained allegorical themes about communism since that was the Cold War era. The 1956 film "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" fell under this analysis, too.

"Terminator 2: __ Day" enacted what kind of action plan?

An example of a sequel that overshadowed the original film is "Terminator 2: Judgment Day." Aside from being the biggest box office earner of 1991, the film featured a buff Linda Hamilton taking charge of the narrative. Director James Cameron's 2019 project is a sequel to this particular sequel.

"E. T. the __ Terrestrial" placed a creature under what classification?

Before Steven Spielberg made product placement prominent in "Minority Report," he had a hard time pushing this idea for his 1982 film "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. The alien's original candy was M&M's but Mars, Inc. refused the idea. Spielberg used The Hershey Company's Reese's Pieces instead.

The fights in "__ Rim" chose which specific location?

"Pacific Rim" clearly demonstrates how North American culture also got influenced by Japanese pop culture. The terms kaiju and mecha get mentioned here a lot, with the original Japanese usage intact. Kaiju refers to huge sea monsters from folklore while mecha are human-driven huge robots.

"A.I.: __ Intelligence" made us think about what quality?

According to film critics, "A.I. Artificial Intelligence" is an example of a precise and compact sci-fi story stretched unnecessarily. It came from Brian Aldiss' 1969 short fiction called "Supertoys Last All Summer Long" about a humanoid robot unaware that he's a toy. The film stretched the premise.

"__ Day" should have been a celebration of which holiday?

The 1996 original "Independence Day" featured Will Smith in the lead, but the 2016 remake had Liam Hemsworth taking over the lead role. Bill Pullman still appeared as the U.S. president in the sequel but as a retired one.

"__ Recall" gave us how much sci-fi?

The 2012 "Total Recall" reboot improved upon the 1990 Arnold Schwarzenegger vehicle in terms of the technology presented in it. But its bleak dystopian feel and its thrilling storytelling remained as exciting as the original. Both are still from sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick's short fiction work.

"Star Trek Into __" plunged The Enterprise into which type of existence?

The 2009 "Star Trek" reboot series had "Star Trek Into Darkness" as its first sequel and "Star Trek Beyond" as the second one. They call this alternate series the "Kelvin timeline" from the USS Kelvin ship that propels this new saga, found at the first reboot film's opening sequence.

Where did "District __" rezone us?

Many sci-fi films present allegorical tales that mirror global reality and concerns. The South African-set sci-fi film "District 9" went toward this direction as it presented race-based allegories alluding to the country's apartheid days.

"A Clockwork __" scheduled us to feel which color or fruit?

It's interesting to note that Anthony Burgess, the novelist who penned "A Clockwork Orange" and talked of ultraviolence in that novel-turned-film, also wrote the screenplay for the '70s miniseries "Jesus of Nazareth." Franco Zeffirelli directed the series while Stanley Kubrick directed the film.

"Blade __" featured what kind of action-focused person?

The 1982 hit film "Blade Runner" came from Philip K. Dick's 1968 novel "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" But the movie title came from writer William S. Burroughs' 1979 novel called "Blade Runner (A Movie)." Director Ridley Scott and scriptwriter Hampton Fancher asked permission to use it.

"Star Wars: The Last __" had us wondering about which creature?

The 2017 film "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" featured the last time we saw Carrie Fisher on-screen since she died in 2016 before the film premiered worldwide. It was also the last time Luke Skywalker appeared in the saga, since its ending implied that he sacrificed himself so the rebels can escape.

What kind of population did "Starship __" gather?

Sci-fi author Robert A. Heinlein wrote the novel "Starship Troopers" with a Filipino lead character named Juan "Johnny" Rico. But the 1997 film version by Paul Verhoeven lifted only a few elements from the novel and added in details from another sci-fi script.

"__ Park" threw us back into which development period?

Usually, a book gets published first and becomes a bestseller before Hollywood options it to become a film. That wasn't the case with Michael Crichton's popular 1990 novel "Jurassic Park" because Steven Spielberg already purchased the book's movie rights prior to its publication.

"The Matrix __" gave us what type of grand event?

A sequel usually waits for a year or so before it gets released, but the Wachowskis defied this rule with "The Matrix Revolutions." "The Matrix" premiered in 1999 then in 2003, they premiered its sequel "The Matrix Reloaded." Its next sequel "The Matrix Revolutions" premiered that same year.

"The Fifth __" searched for which important building block?

If 1997's "The Fifth Element" felt like a fashion show sometimes, that's because famed French designer Jean-Paul Gaultier designed the futuristic and glitzy costumes for the film. He's the same guy who created Madonna's notoriously famous golden cone bra costume in the early '90s.

What color repulsed us in "Soylent __"?

Charlton Heston starred in several sci-fi films that had bombastic plot twists and climaxes. Aside from the big human error discovery in "Planet of the Apes," his character also discovers another horrific human action in "Soylent Green." It's a food-related revelation this time.

"A __ Darkly" pointed us to which kind of equipment?

After appearing as lovers in Francis Ford Coppola's 1992 film "Bram Stoker's Dracula," Keanu Reeves and Winona Ryder worked together again in the 2006 Richard Linklater film "A Scanner Darkly." Their last pairing was in the 2018 rom-com "Destination Wedding."

"Source __" let us type which information?

The 2011 film "Source Code" somewhat experimented with the same sci-fi concepts that made the TV series "Quantum Leap" popular in the '90s. The film also had one person enter a past timeline several times to alter disastrous events in the future.

What creature declared an identity in "I, __"?

If androids can indeed dream of electric sheep in one sci-fi novel-film, then robots can also philosophically assert their "being" in another. That is the idea explored in the 2004 film "I, Robot," when one robot became independent-minded outside its programmed norms. It was loosely based on a seminal sci-fi classic by Isaac Asimov.

"The Day The __ Stood Still" showcased which particular planet?

Before directing the colorful 1961 musical "West Side Story," Robert Wise first handled the 1951 black-and-white sci-fi film "The Day The Earth Stood Still." A 2008 remake featured Keanu Reeves in the role of Klaatu, the humanlike alien protagonist.

"Eternal __ of the Spotless Mind" illuminated our thoughts with what element?

The English poet Alexander Pope's work inspired the title of "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" since the 2004 film's title came from his 1717 poetry. Its interesting premise featured two ex-lovers who had all memories of their past erased. However, the two later meet up again as "strangers."

Ralph Fiennes had which kind of feeling in the "__ Days" film?

Before Katherine Bigelow became the first female to win the Best Director award at the Oscars for the 2008 war film "The Hurt Locker," she directed the 1995 sci-fi film "Strange Days" first. It starred Ralph Fiennes who also starred in the Best Picture-nominated film "Quiz Show" the year before.

Brad Pitt counted what specific creature in "12 __"?

A common sci-fi trope involving time travel connects it with going back in time to stop an eventuality. This is the idea explored in the 1995 film "12 Monkeys" wherein Bruce Willis' character travels back in time to discover how a deadly virus came about.

"Tron: __" let us inherit which kind of impact?

Thanks to the magic of computer-aided cinema, "Tron: Legacy" presented us a 2010 version of Jeff Bridges and a 1982 younger version of him, too, when he first appeared in the original "Tron" film. The sequel continues the story left in the '80s arcade and brings it toward newer gaming technology.

"__ of Men" featured the absence of specific humans. Can you guess who?

Before Alfonso Cuarón explored space in 2013's "Gravity," he explored a dystopian adult-filled world first in the 2006 film "Children of Men." In 2004, he also helmed "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" as the main characters were turning into older teens.

"The __ of Riddick" jotted down which type of evidence?

The 2004 film "The Chronicles of Riddick" starred Vin Diesel portraying the titular character. It acted as a spinoff of sorts from the 2000 horror film "Pitch Black" featuring the same Riddick character.

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