Netflix March 2019: The 11 Best Sci-Fi Movies and Shows to Watch
Netflix's original shows are starting to dominate.
Gerard Way’s The Umbrella Academy is still a huge hit, and for anyone that hasn’t binged it yet, it’s time to start. But more great sci-fi is coming in March thanks to Love, Death & Robots. Everyone should also be sure to watch Marvel’s Ant-Man and the Wasp, Pixar’s The Incredibles 2, and Lucasfilm’s Solo: A Star Wars Story while they still can. It’s only a matter of time before each of these very different sci-fi movies leaves Netflix forever to exist solely on Disney+ later this year.
Russian Doll also recycles the sci-fi-adjacent Groundhog Day time loop concept in a totally novel way, but given how the series ends, we have a hard time labeling it as sci-fi.
The next time you’re hankering for a taste of tomorrow, here are the 11 best pieces of science fiction on Netflix with a focus on the new, exciting, and original — but more importantly, we’ll offer all of the very best recommendations.
Netflix’s The Umbrella Academy adapts the comic series from My Chemical Romance frontrunner Gerard Way in a way that’s engaging, action-packed, and sometimes hilarious. In 1989, 43 women around the world spontaneously give birth to babies — despite never being pregnant. An eccentric billionaire buys seven of the children, and after they begin to develop superpowers, he becomes convinced they’re the key to saving the world.
Much of the series focuses on six of the surviving kids in the present day as an apocalypse looms in the near future. The Umbrella Academy is delightfully weird and, despite some derivative plot points, it remains a really compelling watch.
For fans of Sense8, The Umbrella Academy is the perfect show to fill that hole in your heart.
This one doesn’t hit Netflix until the middle of March, but boy oh boy is it the one to watch. Love, Death & Robots is an animated sci-fi anthology series from Deadpool director Tim Miller in collaboration with David Fincher. These short episodes vary between 5 and 15 minutes and use different animation styles to tell stories within the realms of sci-fi, fantasy, horror, and comedy.
In one episode, three robots go sightseeing in a post-apocalyptic city long after humanity is gone. In another, Hitler dies in a bunch of different alternate realities.
- Love, Death & Robots will be released March 15, 2019
9. The OA
Perhaps Netflix’s strangest show in an ever-growing bevy of weirdness, The OA is, on some level, all about interdimensional group dance magic. That’s not even a joke, but a lot of people sort of thought it was after the first season couldn’t decide if the protagonist was delusional or not.
Netflix just released the trailer for Part II, due out March 22, so there’s no better time but right now to watch Season 1 if you haven’t already.
Travelers, a sci-fi series where time travelers send their consciousnesses back in time to prevent the downfall of society, is criminally underrated. It becomes something of a spy thriller with a sci-fi twist as each Traveler communicates with the Director in the distant future to go on specific missions while maintaining their “cover.”
In Season 3, released in December, the titular Travelers have to work with the FBI after their existence is exposed to the world.
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is another entry in Netflix’s popular sci-fi horror/thriller anthology series, except it’s also kind of a standalone movie — and it’s also a visual choose-your-own adventure, allowing viewers to make choices as the story progresses.
Is it a movie? Is it an episode? I really don’t know, but I do know that it’s 100 percent science fiction.The story follows a young programmer, Stefan (Fionn Whitehead), who questions the nature of reality in the year 1984 as he creates a video game based on a branching narrative novel, Bandersnatch. The book’s author, Jerome F. Davies, went insane and murdered his wife. Will Stefan do something similar? Maybe!
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch can last anywhere between 40 and 90 minutes and has five possible endings.
6. A Clockwork Orange
One of Stanley Kubrick’s masterpieces, this 1971 classic offers the bizarre story of a young man named Alex in a dystopian future set in England. He and his “Droogs” (or friends) go about terrorizing helpless people, but after Alex is convicted of murder, he’s conscripted into an almost even more horrifying kind of mental conditioning.
A Clockwork Orange is disturbing, violent, and not an easy watch. Consider yourself warned! It’s also barely sci-fi, but it’s essential viewing for any film buff.
The story is adapted from Anthony Burgess’ 1962 novel, which he himself despised somewhat, more so once it became widely read only after Kubrick memorialized it in the film.
The first Marvel Studios film to follow the monumental Avengers: Infinity War was always in a tough position, but Peyton Reed’s Ant-Man and the Wasp thrives as a lighthearted and genuinely funny action movie with superheroes that get super-small.
What happened to Scott Lang after Captain America: Civil War? Why wasn’t he in Infinity War? How awesome is Evangeline Lilly as the Wasp?All of these questions and more are answered in one of my personal favorite MCU movies.
For awhile, it felt like Brad Bird might never make a direct follow-up to Pixar’s excellent animated superhero family feature, The Incredibles, but 14 years after the original was released, the sequel picks up moments later. The Incredibles 2 builds upon many of the key themes and ideals presented by the first, exploring what a world with superheroes might really be like, especially in how they’d coexist with all of the normies.
But we shouldn’t need to sell anyone on a Pixar film. They’re all fantastic.
Despite almost making $393 million globally, Solo: A Star Wars Story was dubbed a monumental flop by Lucasfilm and Disney’s standards. Even though the film’s lack of success is the reason why all Star Wars spin-offs were unceremoniously terminated, there’s no denying that Solo delivers a refreshing Star Wars adventure that feels unlike anything that’s come before it.
Solo stars Alden Ehrenreich in the origin story for Harrison Ford’s Han Solo, detailing how the character met Chewbacca and Lando Calrissian, and even how he came to own the iconic Millennium Falcon.
2. Ex Machina
I didn’t know what “edge of your seat” really meant in terms of thriller movies until I saw Ex Machina in the theater. Anyone who enjoyed Alex Garland’s Annihilation will probably like his previous feature Ex Machina even more.
A programmer from a massive tech company wins a contest and gets to visit the company’s brilliant, billionaire founder. But on the founder’s remote compound, he’s been developing synthetic A.I. robot technology and wants someone to help … test them. Ex Machina goes from quirky, to strange, to creepy, to horrifying with enough cerebral tension to make you question whether you’re a human yourself.
In Her, the always excellent Joaquin Phoenix plays a man that falls in love with a disembodied voice akin to Siri or Alexa. Set in the near-future of Los Angeles, he’s a sensitive guy mourning the end of the long relationship. What sounds like a bit of a crazy premise is sold by filmmaker Spike Jonze with nothing short of delicate tenderness.
Considering Her won Best Original Screenplay at the 86th Academy Awards, it’s basically a must-see for any fan of science fiction.