INTRODUCTION
TO
SCIENCE FICTION
Prof. Myrna Monllor Jiménez
copyright © Myrna Monllor Jiménez 2008
Balance (1989)
Definition
» based on scientifically-established or
postulated laws of nature.
» Explore alternate possibilities to a
scientific problem.
Subgenres: Hard Science
Fiction
» Based on physics,
astrophysics,
chemistry
» Accurately
predict how
technology can
change the world
1998
Subgenres: Soft Science
Fiction
» Based on psychology, economics,
political science, anthropology
2006
Subgenres: Cyberpunk
Blade Runner 1982
Other subgenres
Military Science Fiction
Superhuman
Apocalyptic
Space Opera/ Space Western
Background
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
19th Century Writers
Jules Verne
•Journey to the Center of the Earth
• 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
Predicted underwater and space travel
H. G. Wells
• The Time Machine
• The Island of Dr. Moreau
• The War of the Worlds
Anticipated sexual freedom and
eugenics
20th Century Writers
• Concerned about totalitarian states, and with the loss of
personal freedom
• Opposed to fascist and capitalist states
George Orwell
“Big Brother is watching you“
• Anticipates developments in reproductive technology,
eugenics, mind control
• Presented a world where history was prohibited
• Critical of Henry Ford’s assembly line and his assertion
that “History is bunk.”
Aldous Huxley
•Brave New World
Isaac Asimov
Arthur C. Clarke
• I Robot
•2001 Space
Odyssey
Kurt Vonnegut
•Slaughterhouse-five
•Harrison Bergeron
Ray Bradbury
• The Martian
Chronicles
•Fahrenheit 451
The First Science Fiction
Films
A Trip to the Moon
Georges Melies
1902
A Trip to the Moon
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mat81O5ajs
The First Science Fiction
Films
1927
The First Science Fiction
Films
Science Fiction Films of the
1950’s
The Day the Earth Stood Still
(1951)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OfpSXI8_UpY
Plan 9 from Outer
Space1956
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2ukRYsYPmo
Science Fiction Films of the
60’s
• the Cold War
• fear of nuclear destruction
• space wars
Planet of the Apes (1968)
Stanley Kubrick
2001 Space Odyssey (1968)
Dr. Strangelove (1964)
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Kubrick
» Made thought provoking stories
» Showed spectacular space imagery
» Used Pioneering technical effects
» Introduced the first killer computer,
Hal
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWnmCu3U09w
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6umxthz1Ys
Ending
Opening
2001 Space Odyssey
Beginning
2001 Space Odyssey
Ending
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXS8P0HksQo
George Lucas
• Created a modern myth and unforgettable characters
• Used innovative special effects
Steven Spielberg
» Visually poetic images
» Extra-terrestrial intelligence
» Benevolent extra-terrestrials
Humor in Science Fiction
Men in Black (1996)
Mars Attack (1996)
Sleeper (1973)
Sleeper
(1973)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Isrd7E5nzIQ
CHARACTERISTICS
Time displacement into a technological future
where some current tendencies of our culture
have become dominant.
The Fifth Element
Sometimes present a seemingly utopian
social situation that is really dystopian in
nature
The Stepford Wives (1975)
Minority Report (2002)
Many are pessimistic and critical in their
vision of the way scientific achievement
will affect social progress or individual
happiness
The Cell (2000)
Many present a clean, sterile world—or
the opposite—a world ravaged by death
or destruction.
Blade Runner (1982)
Gattaca (1997)
Recent Sci-fi Films
Some are action/adventure films or stories.
The Matrix (1999)
Present the unforeseen consequences of
technology
2001 Space Odyssey (1968)
I Robot (2004)
In the stories science has become a monster
that has overpowered human beings
Gattaca (1997)
Brave New World (1998)
Some deal with space travel, space wars,
or time travel. Newer stories and films
deal with cybernetics and virtual reality.
eXistenz (1999)
Must See Science Fiction
Films
» Metropolis
» The Terminator
» Blade Runner
» Planet of the Apes
» 2001 Space
» E.T.
Odyssey
» Solaris
» Star Wars
» Close Encounters
» Alien
of the Third Kind
» The Day the Earth
» A Trip to the Moon
Stood Still
» Children of Men
» WALL-E http://totalscifionline.com/features/3809-the-100-greatest-sci-fi-movies