Talks have been in session for some time now about if and where there might be somewhere outside of Earth in which humans would be able to live.
Despite toying with the idea of colonizing Mars, it certainly can’t provide the habitat or resources that our home planet does. And yet, there’s nowhere else around…but that just might not stop us from another option. Scientists now think they’ve found the next best thing to Earth.
Called Proxima b, this planet has a mass 1.3 times that of Earth and a temperature range that allows for liquid water on the surface, raising the possibility that it could support life. But it is located in the triple-star Alpha Centauri solar system – a whopping 4.24 light years away from our sun.
If it wasn’t so far away, it would be pretty much perfect. But Proxima B is overwhelmingly far to plan any human transport for the time being. In the meantime, there is finally one mission to explore it officially underway: Breakthrough Starshot.
The craft will make the journey in just 20 years. In order to accomplish this, it will only weigh a few grams and it won’t carry any of its own fuel – instead, it will be propelled by a 100-billion-watt laser fired at it from Earth.
To send humans to Proxima B would pose a challenge no one is yet sure is possible. It would take a vessel large enough to transport humans centuries to travel just one light year; getting to the Proxima b range would take at least a thousand years, and require the consecutive survival and aptitude of many generations of humans for success. And yet, research is already taking place to make this possible.
Frédéric Marin, an astrophysicist and black hole radiation expert at the Université de Strasbourg, has recently produced a series of research papers – in his spare time, and without any funding. There, he questioned what size crew would be able to survive the journey over centuries without outgrowing the ship’s capacity, resulting in too much inbreeding to be able to be healthy, or dying off completely. Next, he tackled how much space would be required to produce food, and how much artificial gravity would need to be maintained in order for the passengers to retain muscle mass and normal bodily functions. “You can use data from biology, anthropometry, anthropology, mathematics, to compute it,” Marin says. “This is a theoretical step, but it’s the first step.”
From the star-travel research nonprofit initiative Interstellar Studies, executive director Andreas Hein chimed in. “There’s no principal obstacle from a physics perspective. We know that people can live in isolated areas, like islands, for hundreds or thousands of years; we know that in principle people can live in an artificial ecosystem like Biosphere2. It’s a question of scaling things up. There are a lot of challenges, but no fundamental principle of physics is violated.”
A truly amazing movie will stay with you long after the credits have rolled. Here we list the legendary blockbusters, cult favorites, and contemporary hits that will go down in history as some of the best movies of all time…
Cinema purists may look down on goofy comedies, but there’s a reason why Superbad makes this list. Released in 2007, it played a part in launching the careers of comic actors Michael Cera and Jonah Hill, and the raunchy humor defined a generation of young people who could completely relate to the awkward protagonists.
29. Ocean’s Eleven
Steven Soderbergh’s Ocean’s Eleven is a heist movie that is guaranteed to have you on the edge of your seat. Praised for its fast-paced plot and witty script, it was one of the highest-grossing movies of 2001. We can see why.
It’s as slick as the suits worn by its all-star cast, as each scene is tightly structured to engage audiences and propel the narrative towards its climactic conclusion. Ocean’s Eleven offers pure entertainment from start to finish.
28. Saving Private Ryan
A real tearjerker, Steven Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan follows the story of U.S Army Ranger Captain John H. Miller (Tom Hanks) and his squad as they battle during the Invasion of Normandy in World War II. Lauded as one of the most realistic and moving war films of all time, it is an intensely harrowing watch.
In 2014, the film was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as “culturally, historically, and aesthetically significant.”
From one blockbuster to another. Christopher Nolan’s Inception has become a modern classic due to its intricate, surreal narrative set-up and mind-bending special effects. The labyrinthian plot follows a pair of corporate spies (played by none other than Leonardo DiCaprio and Joseph Gordon-Levitt) as they use experimental military technology to infiltrate people’s dreams.
It’s an intense watch, requiring concentration as the sci-fi antics of DiCaprio and company unfold before you. The ambiguous ending will definitely leave you scratching your head.
26. Shaun of the Dead
British comedy classic Shaun of the Dead combines two genres that seem like worlds apart — comedy and horror. The resulting movie is a hilarious zombie adventure that has delighted and spooked audiences since its release in 2004.
Director Edgar Wright describes the premise as “a zombie movie following two idiots who were the last to know what was going on, after waking up hungover on a Sunday morning.” The unlikely heroes provide comic relief as they attempt to battle the undead.
25. The Social Network
Social media has invaded the lives of almost every person on the planet. Whilst some argue that it has connected humans like never before, other people believe that it has had a negative effect on society. Whether you are a social media junkie or a true technophobe, you’ll be enthralled by The Social Network.
Bursting with drama and tension, it tells the story of how a few students at Harvard University created a website that would change the world forever.
You might be confused as to how Sacha Baron-Cohen’s wacky and cringe-worthy mockumentary Borat could make a list of the best movies of all time. However, it is safe to say that Borat has made a massive cultural, social, and political impact — as Cohen shines a light on the ugly parts of conservative America.
It’s fitting that the sequel was released in 2020, the year of a monumental presidential election. It’s an uncomfortable watch, making you laugh and wince in equal measure.
Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight won the coveted Academy Award for Best Picture in 2016. It has also been named by many critics as one of the best films of the 21st century, as it successfully breaks boundaries in regards to LGBTQ+ representation and the portrayal of black men.
The film presents three stages in the life of the main character Chiron — his childhood, adolescence, and early adult life. These stages ultimately combine to create a bold, emotive, and deeply symbolic film.
22. Donnie Darko
Beware. Donnie Darko will leave a mark on your psyche. The film was almost released straight to video, but a stroke of luck allowed it to be screened in some cinemas. It became a word-of-mouth hit, and today, it is one of the most celebrated cult films of all time.
This science-fiction psychological thriller follows the adventures of the troubled protagonist (played by Jake Gyllenhaal) as he seeks to find the meaning behind his haunting apocalyptic visions.
21. No Country for Old Men
The Coen Brothers’ No Country for Old Men is a dark, dramatic neo-Western crime drama that has captivated critics and audiences all over the world since its release in 2007. More critics included No Country for Old Men on their 2007 top ten lists than any other film that year, and it’s easy to see why.
Fans of this directorial duo will love the film due to its engaging storyline as well as its themes of fate, conscience, and circumstance.
20. Little Miss Sunshine
This one is for the underdogs. Little Miss Sunshine is a 2006 American comedy-drama film brimming with heart. The story follows the dysfunctional Hoover family as they travel across the United States to allow their young daughter Olive to compete in a beauty pageant.
However, nothing goes to plan when they’re on the road, leading to some exceptionally comical moments. It was an overwhelming box office success, earning over $100 million. It was also nominated for four Oscars, including Best Picture.
19. Get Out
It’s hard to believe that Get Out was the first-ever film directed by writer and actor Jordan Peele. When news broke that the member of sketch comedy duo Key & Peele was working on his first feature film, it’s safe to say that no one expected a movie as dark as Get Out.
The horror film was released in 2017 to rave reviews, praised by critics for its engagement with racial issues. It’s definitely a horror movie with substance.
If you’ve ever found yourself chatting to the Siri function on your iPhone and contemplating the weirdness of 21st-century life, you’ll love Spike Jonze’s Her. It is a poignant science-fiction romance about a lonely man who falls in love with a piece of artificial intelligence technology, voiced by Scarlett Johansson.
The story is equally discomforting and heartwarming, as audiences watch the protagonist become increasingly obsessed with his virtual companion. It received five Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture.
17. Toy Story
Released in 1995, Pixar’s Toy Story represents an important moment in film history. It was the first entirely computer-animated feature film, demonstrating ground-breaking advancements in animation technology.
The movie captured the hearts of audiences across the world, with both kids and adults becoming engrossed in the hijinks of Woody the Cowboy, Buzz Lightyear, and their friends. It’s a fun family movie that has stood the test of time and has since spawned three sequels, all of which garnered commercial success.
16. Shutter Island
Martin Scorsese firstly appears on the list with 2010 American neo-noir psychological thriller Shutter Island. Based on the book of the same name, viewers are taken on a thrilling journey as U.S Marshal Edward “Teddy” Daniels investigates the disappearance of Rachel Solando, a patient at Ashecliffe Hospital for the criminally insane on Castle Island.
It was chosen by the National Board of Review as one of the top ten films of 2010, and grossed over $294 million worldwide. It’s an intense watch, to say the least!
This epic historical drama will take your breath away. It’s a masterpiece from legendary director Martin Scorsese, dealing with complex themes of religion, conflict, and honor. Silence was a passion project for Scorsese, being painstakingly developed over two decades. Critics have praised the intense performances and the engaging plot, with some calling it Scorsese’s masterwork.
Silence is the third of Scorsese’s films to include religious figures struggling with challenges of faith, following The Last Temptation of Christ and Kundun.
A list of the best movies of all time would not be complete without Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas. Boasting a stellar cast led by Robert DeNiro, Joe Pesci, and Ray Liotta, Goodfellas is a riveting gangster movie that was made on a budget of $25 million — and ultimately grossed $46.8 million.
Today, it is hailed as one of the best mobster movies ever due to its non-stop action, clever script, and incredible performances. No wonder it was nominated for six Academy Awards.
13. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King
The denouement of Peter Jackson’s epic trilogy was released in 2003, and it is beloved by Tolkien fans for capturing the magic and mayhem of the original book. Continuing the plot of The Two Towers, hobbits Frodo and Sam make their final way toward Mount Doom in Mordor in order to destroy the One Ring, unaware of the evil Gollum’s true intentions.
Meanwhile, Gandalf, Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, and the rest come together to defeat Sauron and his legions in Minas Tirith.
If you like your movies funny yet twisted, you will love Parasite. Not only did it receive four prizes at the 92nd Academy Awards (including Best Picture), but it was also the first South Korean film to win the Palme D’or at Cannes Film Festival — an accolade reserved for the best film shown at the prestigious event.
It’s a tense, uncomfortable, and riveting watch following a poor family who becomes dangerously entangled in the lives of a wealthier family. We highly recommend it.
11. Good Will Hunting
Nominated for nine Academy Awards, Good Will Hunting is a cinematic gem. The brainchild of actors and screenwriters Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, Good Will Hunting explores the life of 20-year-old janitor Will Hunting, an unrecognized genius who is led down a bad path.
After assaulting a police officer, he dodges jail time by agreeing to see a benevolent therapist (played by Robin Williams), who changes his life and encourages him to confront his demons. It’s a truly moving film.
10. The Fighter
Christian Bale makes the list yet again with his role in the sports drama biopic, The Fighter. A true story, The Fighter is based on the lives of boxing brothers Micky Ward and Dicky Ecklund. Ward lives in the shadow of his successful older brother, who famously won against Sugar Ray Leonard.
However, as Ward attempts to launch his own boxing career, Ecklund battles an addiction that threatens to tear their family apart. It’s an emotive drama with incredible performances.
9. The Big Short
Based on the 2010 book The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, this film tracks the events leading up to the financial crisis of 2007-8. It may seem boring from the synopsis, but director Adam McKay uses unconventional narrative techniques to add comedic flair and create an engaging, thrilling drama.
For example, subprime mortgages and collateralized debt obligations are explained by celebrity guests such as Margot Robbie and Selena Gomez, who break the fourth wall by directly addressing the audience!
8. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a truly unique movie. It defies genres — combining elements of a psychological thriller, science-fiction drama, and romantic comedy. The film has garnered a dedicated cult following due to its distinctive cinematic style, engaging plot, and talented ensemble cast including Kate Winslet, Jim Carrey, Mark Ruffalo, Elijah Wood, Tom Wilkinson, and Kirsten Dunst.
It won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay, and Winslet received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress.
7. 2001: A Space Odyssey
Stanley Kubrick is one of the world’s most famous directors, and for good reason. Sci-fi epic 2001: A Space Odyssey is a dark, experimental, and engaging film that undoubtedly revolutionized the genre. The film is noted for its scientifically accurate depiction of space flight, pioneering special effects, unusual camerawork, and ambiguous imagery.
Interestingly, Kubrick avoided conventional cinematic and narrative techniques; there is little dialogue and judicious use of classical music. It’s an unusual watch, but one you will never forget.
6. Jurassic Park
Hearing the first few bars of John Williams’ beautiful soundtrack will send goosebumps down your spine. You’re transported to Isla Nublar, a fictional island off Central America’s Pacific Coast and the home of Jurassic Park. Steven Spielberg’s classic family film follows a group of visitors who attempt to survive an industrial sabotage on the world’s first wildlife park inhabited by dinosaurs!
It’s a classic for a reason, with ground-breaking special effects and incredible performances from Sam Neill and Laura Dern.
5. The Dark Knight
When Christian Bale donned the legendary caped crusader suit, the superhero cinema universe was changed forever. The Dark Knight was one of the first movies based on a comic book that attracted a mass audience. Even those with no prior interest in the Batman franchise were hooked by Christopher Nolan’s eerily dark, thrilling series.
Heath Ledger’s portrayal of the Joker has been seared into audience’s minds since The Dark Knight was released in 2008. This not your average superhero flick.
Steven Spielberg’s Jaws is one of the most celebrated movies in history. Released in 1975, it shocked audiences with its intense storyline and practical effects. As a bloodthirsty shark hunts down swimmers at a beachside resort town, police chief Martin Brody (Roy Scheider) attempts to kill the predator with the help of a marine biologist (Richard Dreyfuss) and a professional shark hunter (Robert Shaw).
It was one of the first bonafide Hollywood blockbusters, and it is still beloved by fans.
3. Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Quentin Tarantino’s hotly anticipated 10th movie — Once Upon a Time in Hollywood — was a critical and commercial hit. It’s a typically witty, intense, and exciting tale, with many of the hallmarks of Tarantino films such as an energetic, retro soundtrack and a tightly paced narrative.
It follows the exploits of failing character actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stuntman Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), as they navigate Hollywood in the midst of the swinging ’60s and the Manson family murders.
2. Forrest Gump
Forrest Gump is a truly unique movie, with a moving storyline that spans several decades in the life of a slow-witted but kind-hearted man from Alabama who witnesses and unwittingly influences several defining historical events in the 20th century United States. It’s a politically symbolic film, imbued with heart and emotion.
It was a total critical success, winning the Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor for Hanks, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Visual Effects, and Best Film Editing.
1. Pulp Fiction
In 1994, Quentin Tarantino made movie history with Pulp Fiction. With an intricate, non-linear plot that weaves together three storylines, Tarantino crafted a crime drama that has stayed in the hearts and minds of movie buffs for decades.
Critics have praised the sardonic, quirky script and edgy soundtrack, whilst fans love the performances from Samuel L. Jackson, John Travolta, and Uma Thurman. It’s safe to say that Pulp Fiction is a truly iconic movie that has undoubtedly influenced popular culture.