CNET logo Why You Can Trust CNET

Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement

10 of the Best Sci-Fi Movies to Stream on Max Right Now

Dig into Max's deep archive of sci-fi movies across multiple eras.

Kourtnee Jackson Senior Editor
Kourtnee covers TV streaming services and home entertainment news and reviews at CNET. She previously worked as an entertainment reporter at Showbiz Cheat Sheet where she wrote about film, television, music, celebrities, and streaming platforms.
Expertise Cord-cutting | TV and music streaming services | Netflix | Disney Plus | Max | Anime | Interviews | Entertainment Credentials
  • Though Kourtnee hasn't won any journalism awards yet, she's been a Netflix streaming subscriber since 2012 and knows the magic of its hidden codes.
Kourtnee Jackson
4 min read

Are you partial to stories about time travel, superhuman abilities or parallel worlds? Max offers a quality selection of sci-fi movies that span decades and subgenres. From blockbusters like James Cameron's Avatar films to animated flicks that take you into fictional universes or virtual realities, these picks are just a click away on the platform.

Keep scrolling to see our lineup of some of the best sci-fi movies you can stream today on Max.

Warner Bros.

Dune: Part One (2021)

Denis Villeneuve's cinematic take on Frank Herbert's 1965 novel features Timothée Chalamet as Paul Atreides in the sci-fi epic. Dune: Part One starts the story on planet Arrakis, where there's conflict about "the spice," a highly valuable substance across the universe that can prolong life and enhance other abilities. You can stream the film on Max right now, and if you want a touch of nostalgia, check out the 1984 version as well. 

Warner Bros. Animation/DC Studios

Justice League: Crisis on Infinite Earths Part One (2024)

With the help of John Constantine, Barry Allen -- aka The Flash -- travels through parallel worlds trying to stop multiple Earths from being destroyed. Along the way, he meets other superheroes like Superman, Green Arrow, Wonder Woman, Batman, Robin and Catwoman. Traversing the multiverse also means encounters with numerous villains like Lex Luthor and Amazo. It's DC's ultimate multiverse storyline. Watch part one, and stay tuned for part two when it lands on streaming.

Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

War for the Planet of the Apes (2017)

Gear up for Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes (hitting theaters on May 8) by streaming War for the Planet of the Apes. Andy Serkis returns as Caesar in the film, seeing the apes fighting with a militia as a mutated virus spreads. The movie is the sequel to Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, also on Max. 

20th Century Studios

Avatar: The Way of Water (2022)

The sequel to James Cameron's 2009 film, Avatar: The Way of Water, finds Jake Sully as a Na'vi clan chief raising his own family on Pandora. More battles ensue when colonizers return and pose a threat to the world, forcing Jake and his family to flee. To survive and defeat their enemies, they learn the ways of a sea clan. The Avatar universe continues to expand with this film, with three more on the horizon over the next five years. 

Warner Bros. Pictures

The Matrix (1999)

The Wachowskis' original film, The Matrix, remains a classic sci-fi gem. Keanu Reeves stars as Neo, whose mundane life is upended when he learns the truth about the Matrix. Special effects, fight scenes and famous one-liners make it a must-see. Though there are now four movies in the series that are available to watch on Max, this one kicked off the pop culture phenomenon.

Jasin Boland

Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)

George Miller's post-apocalyptic movie centers on Charlize Theron's Furiosa and Tom Hardy's Mad Max. They're fleeing a tyrant and his band of fervent followers in a wasteland while trying to protect others. Furiosa wants badly to find her way back to her childhood homeland, which is ruled by women. Stream this movie ahead of Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga, which is due in theaters in May.

Studio Chizu

Belle (2021)

A reimagining of the Beauty and the Beast fairy tale, Belle is an anime that takes its protagonist into a virtual world. Suzu is a introverted high schooler, but when she discovers "U," a virtual reality, she creates Belle, an alternate persona. Belle becomes a wildly popular singer, but a beast disrupts one of her shows and everyone hunts it. She too, wants to uncover the truth about this "beast."

Twentieth Century Fox

X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

Now's a good time to revisit this movie, with Deadpool 3 on the way and the X-Men '97 TV series on Disney Plus. The film sees the superheroes hop through timelines to save a version of 2023 where Sentinels are wiping out mutants and humans who possess the mutant gene. Magneto and Professor X's bond is explored with Wolverine, Hank and Quicksilver among the heroes tapped to save everyone in the 2023 timeline.

Hulton Archive/Getty Images

WarGames (1983)

The terror of artificial intelligence, '80s style! Matthew Broderick stars as David Lightman, a smart high school kid who's also a hacker. He unknowingly hacks into a military computer system and thinks he's playing a game as an opposing party: the Soviet Union. David's action prompts a series of military responses and attacks as the supercomputer's AI holds the world's fate in its hands. 

Orion Pictures

Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)

If you're craving a sci-fi movie that's less serious, get into this '80s classic with Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter. The utopian future depends on whether Bill and Ted pass their history class and graduate high school. With the aid of someone from 2688, they're ushered through time to learn all they need to know -- with a little rock and roll. Stream the comedy and its sequel on Max.