While we all dream of a highly technology augmented lifestyle as shown in sci-fi movies, the Cyberpunk genre portrays it’s harsh realities. For those who are unaware of ‘Cyberpunk’; it refers to a special sub genre in science fiction that often portray a technologically advanced yet dystopian society. The stories often feature highly advanced tech and gadgets, which are shown as catalysts to a bigger problem. Although there’s a high chance you might have seen several movies that fall into this genre without even knowing (Terminator, Robocop etc.). Nevertheless, if you’re new to the awesomely drab world of cyberpunk and are looking for gateways, the below list might point you in the right direction.
1. The Matrix
Some might argue that this movie shouldn’t be numero uno, but we totally beg to differ from shallow opinions. The Matrix is not only one of the greatest actions movies till date, but is also a classic when talking about Cyberpunk. It tells the story of Neo (Keanu Reeves) who learns that the world he lives in is just a simulated reality as humans are being secretly controlled by sentient computers. High chances you might have already seen this, but that doesn’t mean you can’t rewatch it. Infact this movie demands multiple viewings, if you actually want to get into finer plot details.
2. Blade Runner
You’d either go bonkers upon seeing this movie or you’ll completely hate it for it’s slow pace. These are the only two extremes that can happen when you watch Blade Runner. Nevertheless, this is still one of the most revered film in sci-fi genre that would make you re-watch it several times to get the gist of things. The movie stars Han Solo Harrison Ford in the lead, as he plays a ex-cop specialized in hunting down bioengineered beings called ‘Replicants’. Being directed by Ridley Scott, this is a definitive watch for geeks.
There might be a dispute whether Judge Dredd starring Sly Stallone should be on this list. However, we’ve chosen the 2012 reboot simply named as ‘Dredd’ starring Karl Urban as the titular character. This is simply because this version is more true to it’s comic book roots and is far more entertaining. The movie portrays an advanced yet crime-ridden future with a special police known as ‘Judges’ that can carry out on-spot executions of criminals. The plot of Dredd involves the titular character and his assistant being trapped inside a building controlled by drug lords. What can possibly go wrong in such a situation, right? Well, just watch and ‘judge’ for yourself.
This pick is certainly an odd one when it comes to Cyberpunk movies. Existenz is a weird tale involving bio-technology and virtual reality. It’s plot centres around a new virtual reality game called ‘Existenz’ that gets damaged and throws the characters into a world of organic creepiness that makes it difficult for audiences to distinguish between simulation and reality. The movie stars Jude Law and Jennifer Jason Leigh in a twisted, psychological thriller that will leave you with more questions than answers. Just like life itself!
5. Escape From New York
Directed by the legendary John Carpenter, Escape From New York’s plot is like a cross between Blade Runner and Escape from Alcatraz, with tons of testosterone thrown in the mix. Starring Kurt Russell as the protagonist Snake Plissken, Escape From New York centers around a futuristic Manhattan (New York) that has been turned into a maximum security penal colony. Snake is assigned with the task of retrieving the US President following a plane crash. If you’re a big fan of Metal Gear Solid then this is a definitive watch as Snake Plissken is one of the major inspirations behind Solid Snake.
6. Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children
Final Fantasy VII is one of the best games in the popular RPG series by Square Enix. However, if you weren’t able to get enough of the cool characters and, Advent Children will certainly be a satisfying experience. It’s story takes place after the events of the original game, where our hero Cloud Strife must deal with 3 remnants of Sephiroth, while battling a fatal supernatural disease. We recommend that you pick Advent Children Complete edition as it adds almost 20 minute worth of extra scenes. Final Fantasy Advent Children not only feature some of the most breathtaking CGI, but is a marvellous, action-packed adventure that will leave you spellbound.
7. A.I. Artificial Intelligence
Released in 2001, Artificial Intelligence: A.I. is perhaps one of the most underrated movies directed by none other than Steven Spielberg. Unlike other Spielberg movies, A.I. is a dark and gritty tale that is sure to leave audiences in an emotional turmoil. It’s story centers around an android named David (played by Haley Joel Osment), who has been programmed with human emotions such as love. This might sound like a nice setting to begin with, but soon the story takes a dark turn and will leave you in shambles.
It is definitely hard to sum up the best in such as vast genre of movies in a single list. Nevertheless, we’re sure the above movies are surely the best we could’ve picked. In case you’re not very happy with the list, you can also add your suggestions in comments and please subscribe to our blog for more such posts.