Time travel is by far one of the most popular subjects in science fiction and has almost always been found in the genre in books, movies, and TV shows. Below we’ve chosen the ten best movies or shows that used time travel as their basis.
Back to the Future
The Back to the Future trilogy is one of the most popular scifi series ever and for good reason. It combined time travel and science fiction with comedy and produced three of the most entertaining movies ever made. This year the first movie celebrates its 25th anniversary.
Watching Quantum Leap you’re struck by how they just don’t make shows like it anymore. Its strong moral tone of Sam leaping through time to fix wrongs hits a depth of science fiction storytelling not seen since the original Twilight Zone or Star Trek in the 60s. It’s a show that ended way to soon and should have ended better than it did.
If you’ve ever seen Frequency, you owe yourself to check it out. Part Back to the Future, part Field of Dreams; it’s a unique and really good time travel story where a son is able to talk to his dead father over a radio and change the course of his own history.
Time After Time
One of the best time travel movies ever, and a very strong inspiration for Spielberg and Zemeckis when making Back to the Future. You’ll even see some things that Back to the Future lifted directly from the movie (compare H.G. Wells to Doc Brown when they each try to open their time machine). In the movie H.G. Wells chases Jack the Ripper to modern day San Francisco.
The Time Machine (1960)
Forget the bad remake. The 1960 George Pal Time Machine is the best. You get creepy Morlocks here. No super intelligent talking ones.
Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure
Vastly superior to its sequel, the original Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure has become something of a cult classic over the years. Despite Keanu being a big star now, we’d kill to see a third movie more along the lines of the first. SAN DIMAS HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL RULES!
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home
The most fun of all Trek films, by far. It’s a lighthearted romp after the serious life and death stories the previous movies dealt with. The mission to bring George and Gracie back to the 23rd Century is a classic scifi story that appeals to more than just Trek fans. “Hello, computer…”
You may not have seen Primer, but it’s worth tracking down. It was an extremely low budget time travel movie, with some unique ideas on how time travel could work.
Despite your feelings on how it ended, Lost was one of the better shows to deal with time travel. Most of the fourth and fifth seasons dealt with that as one of the major elements of the story.
You can’t talk about time travel in scifi without mentioning the ol’ Time Lord himself.