Science Fiction Films

Top Ten Chart - 2018/19

Concatenation's annual calculation looking at the 52 British Isles (and Malta) weekly film (movie) charts up to Easter 2019 that accounts for only fantastic films (SF and fantasy).

Remember, this is the UK public's cinema theatre box office we are talking about, and not fantastic film buffs' views. Consequently below this top ten we have included at the end a few other worthies well worth checking out as well as (in some years) some warnings-to-avoid. Also note that this chart compilation calculation did not include DVD sales or spin-off product earnings, and our chart is also subject to weekly vagaries. (In some weeks most of the entries do not gross much but at other times (for example public holidays) overall box office takings are higher.) This means that the chart reflects on-going cinema attendance throughout the year and it is not a strict annual list of the year's high box office earners. Notwithstanding such small-print caveats, standby with the pop corn, here we go...

 


1. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

(12)

Three years after the Jurassic World theme park was closed down, Owen and Claire return to Isla Nublar to save the dinosaurs when they learn that a once dormant volcano on the island is active and is threatening to extinguish all life there. Along the way, Owen sets out to find Blue, his lead raptor, and discovers a conspiracy that could disrupt the natural order of the entire planet. Life has found a way, again.  It has to be said that while folk went to the cinema to see the effects (hence this box office rating) the film is less likely to engage on a smaller screen television.  Trailer here.


2. Avengers: Infinity War

(12)

Following on from Thor: Ragnarok the Avengers and their allies have continued to protect the world from threats too large for any one hero to handle, a new danger has emerged from the cosmic shadows: Thanos. A despot of intergalactic infamy, his goal is to collect all six Infinity Stones, artefacts of unimaginable power, and use them to inflict his twisted will on all of reality. Everything the Avengers have fought for has led up to this moment, the fate of Earth and existence has never been more uncertain.  This was short-listed for the 2019 Hugo Award 'Best Dramatic Presentation' categoryTrailer here.


3. Incredibles 2

(PG)

Follows on from TheIncredibles.  While the Parr family has accepted its collective calling as superheroes, the fact remains that their special heroism is still illegal. After they are arrested after unsuccessfully trying to stop the Underminer, their future seems bleak. However, the wealthy Deavor siblings of Devtech offer new hope with a bold project to rehabilitate the public image and legal status of Supers.  Trailer here.


4. Deadpool 2

(15)

Director David Leitch follows up on Deadpool with an imaginatively titled sequel.  Fortunately it is rather good a superhero flick a tad better than the usual Marvel comics' fare.  Comedy action. A fast-talking mercenary with a morbid sense of humour is subjected to a rogue experiment that leaves him with accelerated healing powers and a quest for revenge.  We cited the original film at the beginning of 2017 as one of the best SF films of 2016 and then just before Easter it was nominated for a Hugo Award (Best Dramatic Presentation -- Long Form)Trailer here.


5. How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World

(PG)

An animation really for the kids but not only came high in our 52 weekly box-office analysis for the year to Easter, it also has a high IMDB score.  As Hiccup fulfils his dream of creating a peaceful dragon utopia, Toothless' discovery of an untamed, elusive mate draws the Night Fury away. When danger mounts at home and Hiccup's reign as village chief is tested, both dragon and rider must make impossible decisions to save their kind.   Trailer here.


6. Aquaman

(12)

Based on the DC Comics, Arthur Curry, half human half from Atlantis, goes on a trip of a lifetime. Not only does this adventure compel him to come to terms with his real identity, but it also forces him to discover whether he is entirely worthy of fulfilling his own destiny: becoming a king.  Trailer here.


7. Captain Marvel

(12)

A Marvel Comics super hero film that sets up the follow up film to Avengers:End Game.  After crashing an experimental aircraft, Air Force pilot Carol Danvers is discovered by the Kree and trained as a member of the elite Starforce Military under the command of her mentor Yon-Rogg. Six years later, after escaping to Earth while under attack by the Skrulls, Danvers begins to discover there's more to her past. With help from S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Nick Fury, they set out to unravel the truth…  Trailer here.


8. Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

(12)

J. K. Rowling's 'Harry Potter' world prequel.  In an effort to thwart Grindelwald's plans of raising pure-blood wizards to rule over all non-magical beings, Albus Dumbledore enlists his former student Newt Scamander, who agrees to help, though he's unaware of the dangers that lie ahead. Lines are drawn as love and loyalty are tested, even among the truest friends and family, in an increasingly divided wizarding world.  Trailer here.


9. Solo: A Star Wars Story

(12)

Star Wars prequel.  With the emerging demand of hyperfuel and other resources, Han Solo finds himself in the middle of a heist alongside other criminals, where they meet the likes of Chewbacca and Lando Calrissian in an adventurous situation exposing the criminal underworld.  Trailer here.


10. Venom

(15)

Dark adventure, action based on the minor Marvel Comics character.  After a faulty interview with the Life Foundation ruins his career, former reporter Eddie Brock's life is in pieces. Six months later, he comes across the Life Foundation again, and he comes into contact with an alien symbiote. The failed reporter is bonded to an alien entity, one of many symbiotes who have invaded Earth and becomes Venom, a parasitic antihero. But the being takes a liking to Earth and decides to protect it.  Stars: Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams and Riz Ahmed.  Trailer here.


 

And the worthies that slipped through the net...

Once again Hollywood dominates chart, the below is where you may find some worthy watching should you want to hire a DVD for the evening.

Ant-Man and the Wasp (12)
One of the more fun Marvel Comics releases of the year.  In the aftermath of Captain America: Civil War (2016), Scott Lang grapples with the consequences of his choices as both a superhero and a father. As he struggles to rebalance his home life with his responsibilities as Ant-Man, he's confronted by Hope van Dyne and Dr. Hank Pym with an urgent new mission. Scott must once again put on the suit and learn to fight alongside The Wasp as the team works together to uncover secrets from their past…  This was short-listed for the 2019 Hugo Award 'Best Dramatic Presentation' categoryTrailer here.

A Quiet Place (15)
Suspenseful drama from the director John Krasinski.  Two parents in a recently post-apocalyptic world, do what it takes to keep their children safe.  We soon learn that there has been an alien invasion. The world is full of creatures with ultra-sensitive hearing hunting, tracking every sound they can hear. Not a sound can be heard from the family hiding in silence, but all it takes is one noise and everything can go wrong…  If they hear you, they hunt you. Rule #1: Don't make a sound. Rule #2: Never leave the path. Rule #3: Red means run.  Stars: Emily Blunt, John Krasinski and Millicent Simmonds.  This was short-listed for the 2019 Hugo Award 'Best Dramatic Presentation' categoryTrailer here.

Glass (15)
A little more cerebral film than many of the above.  This is the third film from director M. Night Shyamalan that follows the conclusion of SplitGlass sees David Dunn (Bruce Willis) locked in a mental hospital, pursuing Kevin Wendell Crumb's (James McAvoy) superhuman figure of 'The Beast' – and the multiple identities that reside within – in a series of escalating encounters.  Meanwhile the shadowy presence of Elijah Price (Samuel L. Jackson) emerges as an orchestrator who holds secrets critical to both men.  Trailer here.

Ready Player One (12)
From the director Steven Spielberg and writers Zak Penn and Ernest Cline.  This is an action adventure set in the future, the population is kept distracted by virtual reality.  When the creator of a virtual reality world called the OASIS dies, he releases a video in which he challenges all OASIS users to find his Easter Egg, which will give the finder his fortune.  There are many nods to science fiction film.  OK, so this actually came out last year, but its top ten chart presence extended beyond last Easter into this 2018/9 Easter-to-Easter year.  Trailer here.

Sorry to Bother You (15)
Comedy with social comment set in a close, parallel world.  In an alternate version of Oakland (USA), Cassius Green gets a telemarketing job and finds the commission paid job a dispiriting struggle as a black man selling to predominately white people over the phone. That changes when a veteran advises him to use his 'white voice', and the attitude behind it to make himself more appealing to customers. With a bizarrely high-pitched accent, Cassius becomes a success even as his colleagues form a union to improve their miserable jobs. Regardless, Cassius finds himself promoted a 'Power Caller' selling the most morally abhorrent but lucrative products and services as his connection to his girlfriend and colleagues fades away. However, Cassius' conscience arises anew as he finds himself in the midst of his boss' bizarre world of condescending bigoted decadence and his sinister plans to create the perfect subservient work force with Cassius' help.  Well worth streaming or getting the DVD.  This was short-listed for the 2019 Hugo Award 'Best Dramatic Presentation' categoryTrailer here.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (PG)
A hugely entertaining animation that explores the various versions of Marvel's Spiderman that will appeal to both those unfamiliar with the historic detail of that character's various3incarnations as it will to Marvel buffs.  Miles Morales is a New York teen struggling with school, friends and, on top of that, being the new Spider-Man. When he comes across Peter Parker, the erstwhile saviour of New York, in the multiverse, Miles must train to become the new protector of his city.  This was short-listed for the 2019 Hugo Award 'Best Dramatic Presentation' categoryTrailer here.

Hereditary (15)
If this was a fantastical horror top ten as opposed to an SF/fantasy one, then Heredity would undoubtedly be in it.  After the family matriarch passes away, a grieving family is haunted by tragic and disturbing occurrences, and begin to unravel cryptic, dark secrets about their ancestry.  Trailer here.

First Man (12)
This is not SF but does concern the core SF trope of space travel as it recounts, 50 years on from actual events, the life of Neil Armstrong leading up to the first Moon landing.  Trailer here.

 

 

See also our selection of best films of 2018 (January - December) as opposed to the year to Easter 2018 - Easter 2019 box office chart above. This personal selection is in our Spring 2019 news.

For forthcoming SF film premieres then see the Concat' Science Fiction diary.

For forthcoming SF film news then see our seasonal Science Fiction news page and its film section.

If you really are into Science Fiction then check out this site's What's new page for our full list of recent postings of news, reviews, diary articles and loads of other stuff.

 


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