My personal favorite science fiction movie franchise of all time is either Transformers (Michael Bay) or Star Wars.
My actual favorite sci-fi movies are one-offs rather than parts of franchises, but I'll say I've enjoyed most of the Star Trek movies (and of course the shows), and Alien is probably up there for the first two movies alone too. So it's probably those two in terms of franchises.
Thinking about my favorite one-off sci-fi movie, I'm actually drawing a blank right now... weird. I'm gonna have to mull over that.
As for full-fledged franchises, it'd have to be Back to the Future and Alien (big mood swings here).
BTTF for its pure entertainment value and for how seamless the whole series is designed. There's not a boring minute in those three films, and if you don't start tucking at timeline and continuity strings all too much it's logically coherent enough for me. BTTF is kinda the sci-fi version of Indiana Jones, perfect escapist cinema.
I very much disliked Alien 4 (I can't even remember its subtitle off the top of my head. Resurrection?). Can't even say why exactly, it just didn't click with me. The first three movies I enjoy immensely for how each is essentially set in a different genre from the rest (psychological horror, action and, ehm, the "Fincher" genre). And even though they're so stylistically diverse, these shifts feel kinda natural to me.
Star Wars good. Gundam good. Star Trek good. Futurama good. Foundation series good until it aint. Dune at least half of it is good. Mass Effect good until they killed it. Phantasy Star good. Metroid good.
I ignored the movie part. Turns out Sci Fi Movie franchises aren't generally good.
I would like to think that John Carpenter is a franchise in and of himself, so I would say the John Carpenter franchise.
Otherwise those Alien movies are good. Star Wars is a franchise I love to soak in, but I don't care for the movies like I used to.
I rewatched the Matrix Trilogy a few months ago, and I actually enjoyed the 2nd and 3rd movie more than I remembered. So the Matrix is definitely on there, too.
But like most other posters, one off sci fi films are usually more my cup of tea (Stalker, Solaris, Annihilation)
Growing up, Star Wars...it's been a mixed bag since the Special Editions. I f'n love the first six Trek films, but the Alien franchise edges it out simply for how much I've discussed and theorized it over the years, especially with these last two and where Ridley Scott would take things if Disney gives him one last chance to finish his arc with David linking it back to the original.
Can I just group up Tarkovsky's more sci fi-ish films (Solaris, Stalker, etc.) and go with that? Because that's what I'd go with.
Otherwise, very tough call. Only the first two Alien films were good. Same with Terminator. Star Wars has been mixed since the beginning. Star Trek movies can vary wildly in quality. I seem to be the only guy who loved Blade Runner but wasn't impressed by the sequel.
Turns out Sci Fi Movie franchises aren't generally good.
Star Wars and Transformers aren't science fiction though
Kinda, at least on Star Wars part. They took out the WWII allegories and replaced Judaism with Scientology which was fucking weird. The Force basically becomes a EDA count. Transformers can go the other way because robots are science.
Have to agree with Fisky, my favorites are one-offs. But if I were to think of a series, and this will come out of left-field, but the Toho Studios series of kaiju films. So, my favorite science fiction movies series has to be The Godzilla series (1954–present).
I like the cut of your jib, friend.
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