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HolidayBuyer's Guide

'The Matrix' (1999)

'Terminator 2: Judgment Day' (1991)

'Jurassic Park' (1993)

'Twelve Monkeys' (1995)

'Face/Off' (1997)

'The Fifth Element' (1997)

'Men in Black' (1997)

'The X-Files: Fight the Future' (1998)

'Armageddon' (1998)

'Back to the Future Part III' (1990)

'Star Trek: First Contact' (1996)

'Total Recall' (1990)

'The Rocketeer' (1991)

'Demolition Man' (1993)

'Strange Days' (1995)

'Mars Attacks!' (1996)

'Contact' (1997)

'Starship Troopers' (1997)

'The Iron Giant' (1999)

'Galaxy Quest' (1999)

"The Matrix" changed the game -- and reinvigorated Keanu Reeves' career. Its portrayal of humans connected to a cyber world became more of a premonition than anyone could have expected, with the rise of smart devices and social media drawing millions around the world to a digital environment.

Caption by / Photo by Warner Bros.

"Judgment Day" shows just how bad things can get when machines and artificial intelligence are made too powerful. With drone warfare and AI growing more advanced every year, it should come as no surprise that "T2" remains a very entertaining cautionary tale.

Caption by / Photo by TriStar Pictures

Spielberg's dinosaur flick is still one of the most iconic sci-fi films. With cutting-edge special effects, it remains a movie -- and franchise -- that stands the test of time. Don't believe that? "Jurassic World 2" is currently in production.

Caption by / Photo by Universal Pictures

Given the amount of time travel on TV -- including an adaptation called "12 Monkeys" -- this is a movie that is as current as ever. What's more, it includes fantastic performances from Brad Pitt, Bruce Willis and Madeleine Stowe.

Caption by / Photo by Universal Pictures

The concept of John Travolta and Nicolas Cage changing faces is utterly ridiculous. And yet, "Face/Off" is one of the more entertaining movies either actor has made. With both actors completely committing to essentially playing each other, and John Woo directing the madness, this is still a modern classic.

Caption by / Photo by Paramount Pictures

There are many reasons why "The Fifth Element" remains one of the best sci-fi movies of all time, but it's the visual style and production design of this film about a taxi driver trying to save the planet that make it so memorable.

Caption by / Photo by Columbia Pictures

"Men in Black" takes one of the cornerstones of sci-fi -- alien visitors -- and serves it with laughs. For that reason alone, it has stood the test of time. The theme song rapped by Will Smith might be another story.

Caption by / Photo by Columbia Pictures

With the return of "The X-Files" on Fox, there's never been a better time to revisit the show's first big screen feature. Unlike the revival season, this movie is steeped heavily in the show's alien mythology, which is what most fans liked most about the original series.

Caption by / Photo by 20th Century Fox

Given that "Armageddon" is based on the iffy concept of sending oil drillers into space to blow up an asteroid, it has to live and die on its actors. Luckily, we got Bruce Willis, Ben Affleck, Liv Tyler and Billy Bob Thornton. 

Caption by / Photo by Touchstone Pictures

The final installment of the "Back to the Future" trilogy is also the most underrated. Stretching beyond mere time-travel adventures, it integrates a western film narrative to make things fresh. More than two decades later, it remains not only a fitting end to the story, but also a well done Western.

Caption by / Photo by Universal Pictures

Before "Star Trek" was rebooted by JJ Abrams, "First Contact" was one of the franchise's greatest movie successes, due in large part to the cast. The first movie to focus only on the "TNG" TV cast told a story that doesn't feel nearly as antiquated as the movies that came before it.

Caption by / Photo by Paramount Pictures

This is a great movie, but it's Arnold Schwarzenegger's portrayal of Douglas Quaid that makes it stand the test of time. Some of the special effects look incredibly dated, but Schwarzenegger's performance more than makes up for it. 

Caption by / Photo by TriStar Pictures

You'd think a '90s sci-fi movie about the World War II era would feel dated, but the vision of a world in which a pilot dons an experimental jet pack to fight Nazis resonates eerily well in 2017, showing that anyone can step up to become a superhero simply by doing what's right.

Caption by / Photo by Walt Disney Pictures

This is the silly version of a dystopia we could use in 2017. Taco Bell is the only surviving restaurant and curse words get you tickets, but that might be worth it for a society where violence has been largely eradicated. 

If only someone would explain how the three seashells work.

Caption by / Photo by Warner Bros.

Dismissed when it debuted in 1995, the mix of sci-fi and noir was clearly ahead of its time. With VR gaming back at the forefront of technology, now is the right time to revisit this one.

Caption by / Photo by 20th Century Fox

With a star-studded cast -- including Jack Nicholson, Glenn Close, Michael J. Fox and Annette Bening, among many others -- Tim Burton's comedy about an alien invasion is not only very funny but also incredibly well done. While it sits with "Ed Wood" in the pantheon of Burton movies that aren't discussed often, it deserves a fresh look.

Caption by / Photo by Warner Bros.

With so many movies about aliens visiting Earth, "Contact" is the rare example of humans going to space in search of life. And with interest in extraterrestrial life never wavering, this Jodie Foster-led story remains a great example of how to realistically portray the topic.

Caption by / Photo by Warner Bros.

Though panned by critics upon release, "Starship Troopers" has become a cult classic. Its satirical look at sci-fi continues to win over new fans. 

Caption by / Photo by TriStar Pictures

Regardless of genre, a good story about friendship is hard to beat. That's where "The Iron Giant" shines. Integrating sci-fi conventions into an animated film about two friends -- one of which is a robot -- not only made for a great film but helped open up younger audiences to the genre.

Caption by / Photo by Warner Bros.

Many fans of the original "Star Trek" series can admit to how cheesy the show could be. "Galaxy Quest" spoofs that perfectly. It also serves as a comedic template for Fox's upcoming "The Orville," starring Seth MacFarlane.

Caption by / Photo by DreamWorks Pictures
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