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The Best Science Movies on The Criterion Channel

Finding a good Science movie to watch can be hard, so we've ranked the best ones and included where to watch them. Check out our list of the best Science movies of all time streaming on The Criterion Channel.

VIEW: best
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1. Modern Times

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
8.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo100%
Reelgood Logo
88/100
Released: 1936Rated: G
Comedy, Drama

What it's about: The Tramp struggles to live in modern industrial society with the help of a young homeless woman.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 2 services (iTunes & Prime Video).

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2. Solaris

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
8.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo95%
Reelgood Logo
84/100
Released: 1972Rated: PG
Drama, Mystery

What it's about: A psychologist is sent to a space station orbiting a planet called Solaris to investigate the death of a doctor and the mental problems of cosmonauts on the station. He soon discovers that the water on the planet is a type of brain which brings out repressed memories and obsessions.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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3. Eraserhead

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo90%
Reelgood Logo
81/100
Released: 1977
Drama, Cult

What it's about: Henry Spencer tries to survive his industrial environment, his angry girlfriend, and the unbearable screams of his newly born mutant child.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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4. Freaks

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.9/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo94%
Reelgood Logo
79/100
Released: 1932
Drama, Cult

What it's about: A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 7 services (iTunes, Google Play & 5 others).

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5. Eyes Without a Face

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo98%
Reelgood Logo
78/100
Released: 1960
Drama, Horror

What it's about: Dr. Génessier is riddled with guilt after an accident that he caused disfigures the face of his daughter, the once beautiful Christiane, who outsiders believe is dead. Dr. Génessier, along with accomplice and laboratory assistant Louise, kidnaps young women and brings them to the Génessier mansion. After rendering his victims unconscious, Dr. Génessier removes their faces and attempts to graft them on to Christiane's.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 2 services (iTunes & Prime Video).

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6. Fantastic Planet

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo90%
Reelgood Logo
78/100
Released: 1973Rated: PG
Animation, Drama

What it's about: On the planet Ygam, the Draags, extremely technologically and spiritually advanced blue humanoids, consider the tiny Oms, human beings descendants of Terra's inhabitants, as ignorant animals. Those who live in slavery are treated as simple pets and used to entertain Draag children; those who live hidden in the hostile wilderness of the planet are periodically hunted and ruthlessly slaughtered as if they were vermin.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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7. Cronos

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo90%
Reelgood Logo
73/100
Released: 1993Rated: R
Horror, Drama

What it's about: Faced with his own mortality, an ingenious alchemist tried to perfect an invention that would provide him with the key to eternal life. It was called the Cronos device. When he died more than 400 years later, he took the secrets of this remarkable device to the grave with him. Now, an elderly antiques dealer has found the hellish machine hidden in a statue and learns about its incredible powers. The more he uses the device, the younger he becomes...but nothing comes without a price. Life after death is just the beginning as this nerve-shattering thriller unfolds and the fountain of youth turns bloody.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 4 services (iTunes, Google Play & 2 others).

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8. A Brief History of Time

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo94%
Reelgood Logo
70/100
Released: 1991Rated: G
Documentary, Biography

What it's about: The story of the extraordinary life of eminent scientist, Steven Hawking. As he goes through school, and despite being diagnosed with ALS, Hawking develops revolutionary theories about time, black holes, and the origin of the universe.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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9. Fast, Cheap & Out of Control

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo91%
Reelgood Logo
68/100
Released: 1997Rated: PG
Documentary

What it's about: Starting as a darkly funny contemplation of the Sisyphus-like nature of human striving, it ultimately becomes a profoundly moving meditation on the very nature of existence.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 6 services (iTunes, Google Play & 4 others).

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10. Things to Come

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo93%
Reelgood Logo
68/100
Released: 1936
Science-Fiction, Drama

What it's about: The story of a century: a decades-long second World War leaves plague and anarchy, then a rational state rebuilds civilization and attempts space travel.

Where to Watch: Available to watch free online (Tubi TV), stream on a popular subscription service (Prime Video, ConTV & The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $1.99 on 6 services (iTunes, Google Play & 4 others).

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11. The War of the Worlds

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
66/100
Released: 1953Rated: PG
Action & Adventure, Science-Fiction

What it's about: The residents of a small town are excited when a flaming meteor lands in the hills, but their joy is short-lived when they discover it has passengers who are not very friendly.

Where to Watch: Available to watch free online (PopcornFlix), stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 7 services (iTunes, Google Play & 5 others).

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12. Robinson Crusoe on Mars

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo94%
Reelgood Logo
65/100
Released: 1964
Action & Adventure, Science-Fiction

What it's about: Stranded on Mars with only a monkey as a companion, an astronaut must figure out how to find oxygen, water, and food on the lifeless planet.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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13. Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo71%
Reelgood Logo
64/100
Released: 1974Rated: G
Action & Adventure, Fantasy

What it's about: Great monster fight sequences are a highlight of the 14th Godzilla film. Aliens armed with a mechanical Godzilla intend to take over the planet. The earthlings summon the legendary King Seesar to assist Godzilla in the battle to defend earth.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $9.99 on 1 service (Vudu).

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14. Yella

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo81%
Reelgood Logo
61/100
Released: 2007
Drama, Romance

What it's about: Drama about a woman who is estranged from the possessive and violent husband who can't bring himself to give her up. When their fraught interaction finally comes to a dramatic conclusion, her life takes an odd shift.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (Fandor, The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $2.00 on 1 service (Vudu).

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15. Fiend Without a Face

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo67%
Reelgood Logo
56/100
Released: 1958
Horror, Science-Fiction

What it's about: An American airbase in Canada provokes resentment from the nearby residents after fallout from nuclear experiments at the base are blamed for a recent spate of disappearances. A captain from the airbase is assigned to investigate, and begins to suspect that an elderly British scientist who lives near the base and conducts research in the field of mind over matter knows more than he is letting on..

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 2 services (iTunes & Prime Video).

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16. Terror of Mechagodzilla

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo43%
Reelgood Logo
53/100
Released: 1975Rated: G
Action & Adventure, Drama

What it's about: Godzilla comes to the rescue when an alien race rebuilds Mechagodzilla to destroy Earth's cities. A traitorous scientist gives them a second weapon: Titanosaurus.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 1 service (Prime Video).

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17. Lions Love

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo67%
Reelgood Logo
52/100
Released: 1969
Comedy, Drama

What it's about: Three actors in Hollywood live and love together. A director comes from New York to make a movie about actors and Hollywood.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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18. Nine Days of One Year

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
50/100
Released: 1961
Drama

What it's about: Two young scientists are exploring new fields of nuclear physics. Dmitry Gusev and Ilya Kulikov are good friends, but rivals in love. Dmitry marries Lyolya and they live happily together. Luck has it that he makes an important discovery. Unfortunately he exposes himself to radioactivity during the experiments. As a result he falls seriously ill. However Dmitry has a strong spirit. His will to live, the deep passion for his work and his strong love for mankind makes it possible for him to recover.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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19. The Cars That Ate Paris

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
5.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo60%
Reelgood Logo
49/100
Released: 1974Rated: PG
Comedy, Cult

What it's about: After the death of his brother on the road, unemployed and unstable drifter Arthur Waldo stays for a while in the rural Australian town of Paris as the guest of the mayor, who hopes he will become a permanent member of the Paris population. Arthur soon realizes the quaint hamlet has a sinister secret: they orchestrate car accidents and rob the victims. Survivors are brought to the local hospital, lobotomized, and used for a local doctor's experiments.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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20. Begone Dull Care

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
42/100
Released: 1949
Animation

What it's about: Begone Dull Care shines with his masterful use of scratching and painting on film stock. In Begone Dull Care, McLaren adds complexity to Lye’s compositions, emphasising sound/visual synchronisation and generating depth on his mobile canvas. The film gives warmth and movement to compositions resembling a constantly morphing Jackson Pollock painting, yet never fails to remind us of its very calculated aesthetics when it suddenly adapts to the score’s slower movements and shifts from expressionistic and oversaturated explosions to minimalist vertical lines that vibrate accordingly to Oscar Peterson’s piano. (cont. http://sensesofcinema.com/2005/cteq/begone_dull_care/)

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (Fandor & The Criterion Channel).

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21. First Man Into Space

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
5.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
37/100
Released: 1959
Drama, Independent

What it's about: The first pilot to leave Earth's atmosphere lands, then vanishes; but something with a craving for blood prowls the countryside...

Where to Watch: Available to watch free online (Tubi TV), stream on a popular subscription service (Prime Video, The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 2 services (iTunes & Prime Video).

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22. Emotion

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
37/100
Released: 1966
Fantasy, Drama

What it's about: Experimental short film depicting the life, perhaps real, perhaps a dream, of a young girl named Emi. Emi travels to the city where she encounters her counterpart, Sari, and falls in love with…a vampire?

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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23. The X from Outer Space

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
5.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
31/100
Released: 1967Rated: PG
Horror, Science-Fiction

What it's about: The spaceship AAB-Gamma is dispatched from FAFC headquarters in Japan to make a landing on the planet Mars and investigate reports of UFOs in the area. As they near the red planet, they encounter a mysterious UFO that coats the ship's hull with unusual spores. Taking one of the specimens back to earth, it soon develops and grows into a giant chicken-lizard-alien monster that tramples Japan.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).