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Trailers of Historically Significant Films – The SF/F/H Movies

University of Houston’s Digital History offers Trailers of Historically Significant Films. [link via Cynical-C]

I’ve included the 53 films of note for sf/f/h genre fans in chronological order with links to their trailers. And before the genre-Nazis start howling at the moon, these are Digital History’s classifications, except for Tarzan and His Mate (which was classified as Africa) and Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (Education :O). Oddly, the 1933 King Kong is labeled as fantasy and the 1976 version is labeled as science fiction. Go figure. Also, I was going to include The Way We Were because it’s arguably horror, but I didn’t.

BONUS QUESTION: How many of these titles were based on books (excluding Outer Limits) ?

  1. Metropolis (1927)
  2. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)
  3. Frankenstein (1931)
  4. Dracula (1931)
  5. The Mummy (1932)
  6. King Kong (1933)
  7. Invisible Man (1933)
  8. Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
  9. Buck Rogers (1939)
  10. Wizard of Oz (1939)
  11. Thief of Bagdad (1940)
  12. Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman (1942)
  13. Ape Man (1943) (2nd trailer)
  14. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
  15. Harvey (1950)
  16. The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)
  17. War of the Worlds (1953)
  18. Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954)
  19. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)
  20. Around the World in 80 Days (1956)
  21. Forbidden Planet (1956)
  22. Earth vs. the Flying Saucers (1956)
  23. Incredible Shrinking Man (1957)
  24. 1984 (1959)
  25. Angry Red Planet (1960)
  26. Time Machine (1960)
  27. Outer Limits (1960’s TV)
  28. Psycho (1960)
  29. Fahrenheit 451 (1966)
  30. Wolfman (1966)
  31. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
  32. Barbarella (1968)
  33. Planet of the Apes (1968)
  34. Night of the Living Dead (1968)
  35. Exorcist (1973)
  36. Tommy (1975)
  37. King Kong (1976)
  38. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
  39. Star Wars (1977)
  40. Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981)
  41. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
  42. Blade Runner (1982)
  43. Zelig (1983)
  44. Terminator (1984)
  45. Ghostbusters (1984)
  46. Back to the Future (1985)
  47. ET: The Extraterrestrial (1988)
  48. Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)
  49. Jurassic Park (1993)
  50. Independence Day (1996)
  51. Being John Malkovich (1999)
  52. Day After Tomorrow: Storm Surge (2004) (2nd trailer)
  53. Bubba Ho-Tep (2002)

Oh, and Pete, you may want to check out the Barbarella trailer. You’re welcome.

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

5 Comments on Trailers of Historically Significant Films – The SF/F/H Movies

  1. I think The Shape of Things to Come should have been on the list too. I think it came out in the late 20s/early 30s basicaly an art deco futurism film. I wasn’t alive back then but it struck me that it was probably fairly influential/representative. They even had a scene of a smiling couple ordering a baby from a vending machine. Kind of weird considering how people back then were supposed to be more conservative and we’d consider that to be icky today.

  2. Nice set of links, yes an incomplete list of historically significant.

  3. “They even had a scene of a smiling couple ordering a baby from a vending machine. Kind of weird considering how people back then were supposed to be more conservative and we’d consider that to be icky today.”

    I don’t remember that scene from THINGS TO COME (1936), which told of the world war lasting a century, culminating in a Dark Ages that ended only when world scientists combined for world peace (by means of aerial gas attacks). A shining new socialist metropolis rises the ashes (or, rather, sinks, since the new city is entirely underground), culminating in a moonshot (literally, shot by cannon, by the way). THINGS TO COME established the science fiction fashion statement that people in the future would dress like Romans, in togas. (It also made me a fan of Raymond Massey.)

    But there was a scene like that in a movie called JUST IMAGINE. The scene is one where the comic from the present (1930) is transported to the far future (of 1980!! when everyone has a biplane), and sees a happy young couple purchasing a baby from a vending machine. He wisecracks “Give me the good old days!”.

    You see, it was a joke, not a political statement advocating cloning. The joke was about crass commericialism. Seeing people waste money on things they can do better themselves is always funny, in any age.

    In 1930, during the depression, a woman who bought her dress in a store rather than made it herself was kind of a new thing. The vending machine was also a fairly new appliance back then. The idea that in the future everything would be done by machine that is now done, um, manually, was funny.

    Ah, for the far future days of 1980! Who needs a flying car? Where is my biplane?

  4. And I’m still waiting for my jetpack!

  5. who ever posted this site did good. thank you for these trailers.

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