Although not as mainstream as comedies or thrillers, movies featuring artificial intelligence have made their mark and are worth exploring. Even if you’re not a sci-fi buff, chances are you’ll recognize at least one film from this list.
This article presents the top ten must-watch artificial intelligence movies, ranging from timeless classics to groundbreaking titles that have redefined the genre.
From the heartwarming tale of a boy and his robot to the dark side of advanced technology taking over, this list has something for everyone. Whether you’re interested in the ethical dilemmas surrounding AI or just want to see some cool robots, these films are sure to entertain and provoke thought.
Our top pick for post-apocalyptic movies is “Finch“, a film released last year. The story follows the life of Finch Weinberg, an engineer who lives with his dog in a desolate world. In a bid to protect his furry friend, he constructs a robot whose sole purpose is to safeguard him. As the robot interacts with the duo, it begins to learn about emotions such as love, friendship, and the essence of humanity. The trio forms an unlikely family, embarking on a journey to find a new home. Does their quest bear fruit? Watch the movie to find out.
2. The 100
Set in a dystopian future where a nuclear war has ravaged Earth, “The 100” is a TV show that takes place 97 years after the catastrophe. The surviving humans reside in twelve space stations, merged to create “The Ark.” With resources dwindling, all crimes, except for those committed by minors, carry the death penalty. When the station’s life support systems fail, a hundred young prisoners are dispatched to Earth to ascertain whether it’s habitable.
However, the teens discover that they’re not the only ones on the planet and must learn to survive and thrive in their new surroundings. Although the initial plot may not suggest a connection to artificial intelligence, the show eventually introduces an AI system named “ALIE” that played a significant role in civilization’s collapse. In later seasons, the impact of AI on human actions and decisions is explored, offering a compelling insight into how technology and humans interact in a post-apocalyptic world.
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3. Blade Runner / Blade Runner 2049
Let’s delve into some of the most iconic movies centered around artificial intelligence. Blade Runner, directed by Ridley Scott, and its sequel Blade Runner 2049, directed by Denis Villeneuve, present a world where humans and androids coexist. However, imagine being an android with only four years to live. Would it be enough time to escape and find your creator, who could potentially extend your life? It may seem possible, but the task is not without its challenges.
Blade Runner, the protagonist, hunts down these androids, creating a thrilling plotline. The original movie is based on Philip K. Dick’s novel “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?,” and the sequel delves even deeper into the evolution of artificial intelligence.
Westworld takes a different approach to AI. Set in a Delos world filled with human-like androids, visitors can live out their deepest desires for a hefty sum. They can visit Western World, Medieval World, or Roman World, indulging in their wildest fantasies.
However, everything takes a dark turn when a virus infects the robots’ software, causing them to turn on the visitors. The 1973 movie or the 2016 remake series will leave you on the edge of your seat, wondering who will make it out alive.
5. The Matrix (Film Series)
The Matrix, a movie series directed by the Wachowskis, depicts a world where AI has taken over, one of humanity’s biggest fears. People live within a simulation, unaware of the truth, except for a select few. Computer hacker Neo joins a group of freedom fighters to combat the evil intelligence, leading to an epic battle. If you haven’t seen this classic yet, it’s a must-watch. The Matrix series is complete with three thrilling movies.
6. Star Wars (Film Series)
Let’s shift gears and delve into the world of the Star Wars franchise. The series chronicles an epic intergalactic adventure, where Luke Skywalker and his allies attempt to save Princess Leia and halt an evil empire. Although there is an abundance of content to cover, we’ll focus on two beloved characters: C-3PO, a protocol droid, and R2-D2, an astromech droid. These sentient AI droids possess human-like personalities capable of expressing emotions, communicating, and even sharing their opinions.
Many Star Wars fans view them as “pet best friends” who can talk. Could these droids potentially provide a solution for those with allergies? If you believe so, there are various toy robots inspired by this dynamic duo that you can witness in the video below.
7. The Terminator (Film Series)
The Terminator franchise is another example of a film series that explores the dangers posed by artificial intelligence. The story takes place in a world ravaged by the AI-powered Skynet, where humans live in hiding underground. One day, they rebel, prompting the evil software to send a cyborg assassin, The Terminator, back to 1984 from 2029 to stop the rebellion’s leader.
The Terminator’s primary objective is to locate and eliminate the woman who will give birth to John Connor, the rebellion’s leader. On the trail of the mechanical killer is Kyle Reese, who endeavors to destroy the cyborg and safeguard the woman from impending doom. If you enjoyed the original film, there are six more movies in the series for you to indulge in.
Let’s transition into the world of animation and explore the tale of a small robot named WALL-E. He lives alone on Earth, tasked with cleaning up all the waste left behind by humanity. Over time, WALL-E develops emotions, including feelings of loneliness and love. One day, he encounters another robot named EVE, who is on a mission to find signs of life on Earth. The two of them embark on an exciting adventure together. WALL-E is a rare cinematic example that showcases AI’s positive side and the beneficial impact it can have on the world.
Technology has become an integral part of our lives, and voice assistants such as Siri or Alexa have become commonplace, helping us with our daily routines. In contrast, “Her” presents an advanced version of a voice assistant. The protagonist, Theodore, purchases an AI-based software named Samantha, which interacts with him like a regular human being. As time progresses, their relationship deepens, and they fall in love.
10. Black Mirror The “Black Mirror”
Series taps into our collective anxiety about the modern world and technological advancements. Each episode presents a unique, captivating story, exploring the theme of contemporary technoparanoia set in an alternative reality or near future. These issues reflect our society or the possible consequences of our actions, which could prove to be catastrophic for humanity.
For instance, one episode portrays a world where people have chips implanted in their heads that record all their experiences, which can then be played back like a movie. The series might not make you feel uplifted, but it’s highly thought-provoking and encourages reflection on different aspects of life.