5 Unmissable Sci-Fi Picks on Netflix to Watch in May 2023

Get ready to embark on an extraordinary sci-fi journey this May with a curated selection of the best movies available on Netflix and other popular streaming services. From mind-bending tales of artificial intelligence to dystopian adventures in futuristic worlds, these captivating films are guaranteed to captivate and transport you to new realms. Whether you’re seeking thought-provoking narratives, thrilling action, or visually stunning spectacles, our top five sci-fi movie picks for this month offer an array of cinematic delights.

Get your popcorn ready as we dive into the captivating worlds of these must-watch sci-fi gems that will leave you awe-inspired and entertained.


Year: 2019
Run time: 2h 2m
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Cast: Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly

Explore the captivating world of “Alita: Battle Angel” – a science fiction movie helmed by renowned director Robert Rodriguez. This visually stunning film brings to life the well-known sci-fi trope of a society divided into the privileged and the less fortunate. Centered around a cyborg named Alita (portrayed by the remarkable Rosa Salazar), who awakens with no recollection of her past, the story follows her journey to find her place in a chaotic world. Prepare to be enthralled by thrilling fight sequences and exhilarating rollerball moments. Despite being an unfairly criticized adaptation of a legendary manga, “Alita: Battle Angel” shines through its exceptional performances and sensory spectacle. As a sequel may be on the horizon, now is the perfect time to catch up on this enthralling film.

Blade Runner 2049

Year: 2017
Run time: 2h 44m
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Cast: Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, Ana de Armas

Step into the mesmerizing world of “Blade Runner 2049,” the highly acclaimed sci-fi sequel directed by Denis Villeneuve. Set three decades after the original film, it follows the story of Officer K (portrayed by Ryan Gosling), a replicant tasked with tracking down rogue replicants. However, his discovery of a secret leads him on a quest intertwined with the whereabouts of former blade runner Rick Deckard (played by Harrison Ford). As the sequel to the iconic “Blade Runner,” this film continues to explore the consequences of humanity’s actions in a dystopian future. With its profound themes and breathtaking visuals, “Blade Runner 2049” ranks among the best sci-fi films of the 2010s. As a TV series is on the horizon, now is the ideal time to revisit this cinematic masterpiece. – Toussaint Egan

Ex Machina

Year: 2014
Run time: 1h 48m
Director: Alex Garland
Cast: Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander

Experience the emergence of artificial intelligence with “Ex Machina,” the directorial debut of Alex Garland. The film delves into the early stages of machine intelligence, where Caleb Smith (played by Domhnall Gleeson), an employee of a tech giant, is invited to spend time with his enigmatic boss, Nathan Bateman (portrayed by Oscar Isaac). As Caleb interacts with Nathan’s creation, an artificially intelligent android named Ava (brought to life by Alicia Vikander), he becomes entangled in a web of intrigue, torn between his feelings for Ava and suspicion toward Nathan. With its sleek and chilling atmosphere, “Ex Machina” presents a thought-provoking exploration of human identity. A must-watch sci-fi that reveals new layers upon repeated viewings. – TE

Pitch Black

Year: 2000
Run time: 1h 49m
Director: David Twohy
Cast: Vin Diesel, Radha Mitchell, Cole Hauser

Embark on a thrilling sci-fi horror adventure with “Pitch Black,” the start of an exciting personal project for the ever-versatile Vin Diesel. Directed by David Twohy, this film expertly combines elements of science fiction and horror. Set in a world reminiscent of John Carpenter’s “Ghost of Mars,” “Pitch Black” introduces Richard B. Riddick (portrayed by Vin Diesel), a dangerous criminal being transported to prison. However, when their ship crashes,

Riddick and his fellow survivors must band together to navigate the hostile environment of the planet and find a way to escape. “Pitch Black” stands out as the standout entry in the franchise, delivering a thrilling blend of sci-fi and horror. The collaboration between director David Twohy and horror writers Ken and Jim Wheat creates an immersive and pulse-pounding experience. As you dive into the chilling world of “Pitch Black,” you’ll witness Diesel’s iconic portrayal of Riddick and the intense struggle for survival. Brace yourself for a gripping sci-fi horror that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Starship Troopers

Year: 1997
Run time: 2h 9m
Director: Paul Verhoeven
Cast: Casper Van Dien, Dina Meyer, Denise Richards

Delve into the biting social commentary of “Starship Troopers,” a sci-fi film directed by the perceptive Paul Verhoeven. Based on the novel by Robert A. Heinlein, this film serves as a scathing satire on American foreign policy and the military-industrial complex. Set in the 23rd century, the story follows a group of high school classmates raised in a fascistic military government. As they are thrust into an existential war against highly evolved arachnid creatures, the film cleverly references Nazi propaganda films, offering a chilling in-universe recruitment narrative. “Starship Troopers” challenges its audience to question the state of democracy and contemplate what it means to be human. With its subversive brilliance and eerie prescience, this sci-fi gem demands a fresh appreciation.


Director: Jennifer Phang
Stars: Jacqueline Kim, James Urbaniak, Freya Adams
Runtime: 90 mins

Delve into the thought-provoking world of “Advantageous,” directed by Jennifer Phang. This film centers around a woman who has achieved great success in her field but finds herself on the verge of losing everything due to societal biases based on race and gender. Suddenly dismissed from her position simply due to aging, she faces the harsh reality of conditional privilege evaporating and the ensuing struggle to provide for her daughter.

While “Advantageous” presents a sci-fi premise, its core focus lies in the human toll. The story portrays a mother grappling with complex decisions as she strives to protect her daughter, even though she realizes that the future will demand similar sacrifices from her child. In this seamless blend of reality and fantasy, the film exposes the emotional struggles and challenges faced by its characters, transcending the boundaries of genre.


Director: Joe Penna
Stars: Anna Kendrick, Daniel Dae Kim, Shamier Anderson, and Toni Collette
Runtime: 116 mins

Prepare for an intense and captivating sci-fi experience with “Stowaway,” directed by Joe Penna and featuring an exceptional cast including Anna Kendrick, Daniel Dae Kim, Shamier Anderson, and Toni Collette. The film takes a unique spin on the concept of our protagonist accidentally boarding a rocket to Mars and transforms it into a suspenseful tale of human resilience and sacrifice.

As our lead character discovers there’s no way to return safely until the mission is complete, the situation worsens when they realize the ship’s oxygen supply is rapidly depleting. With the looming threat of running out of oxygen before reaching their destination, “Stowaway” explores the sense of horror that arises from being trapped in space and the escalating fear of an uncertain fate. Balancing heartbreaking moments with heartwarming elements, the film offers character-driven storytelling amidst high-stakes action, encouraging the audience to form a deep bond with the cast as they navigate through a series of seemingly impossible choices.

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to explore these remarkable sci-fi movies available on Netflix and other streaming services this May. From thought-provoking concepts to thrilling action and captivating visuals, these films are sure to satisfy your sci-fi cravings. So grab your remote, settle into your favorite spot, and get ready to be transported to exciting and imaginative worlds. Enjoy the cinematic wonders that await you on your sci-fi movie marathon.

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Written by Ralph Glorioso

World cinema and electronic music enthusiast. Most importantly, a firm believer in slice of life and iyashikei anime.

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