There are surprisingly few science fiction films that feature trips to the moon. Here are my 10 favorites.
1. First Men in the Moon (1964) – Story based on an H. G. Wells novel. In 1899, two men and a women go to the moon using anti-gravity and find an underground civilization of intelligent insect-like creatures.
2. Destination Moon (1950) – A surprisingly good and fairly accurate movie that features art by the famous Chesley Bonestell. Produced by George Pal who did many of my favorite movies.
3. Rocketship X-M (1950) – Released just days before the big-budget “Destination Moon” this movie stars Lloyd Bridges. Four men and a woman attempt to go to the moon but an accident sends them to Mars where they find the remains of a civilization destroyed by an atomic war.
4. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) – Explorers find a mysterious black monolith on the moon which triggers an expedition to Jupiter.
5. From Earth to the Moon (1958) – The story is based on a Jules Verne novel. In the 1860s a munitions manufacturer teams with a metallurgist to shoot themselves, a young man, and the metallurgist’s daughter, in a ship to the moon.
6. Moon (2009) – A lone man (played by Sam Rockwell) is a miner on the moon. He has a three-year contract. Or does he? A bit slow moving but interesting.
7. Iron Sky (2012) – Some Nazis fly to the moon in 1945, build a fleet of spaceships, and invade earth in 2018. Interesting story idea but weakly executed.
8. Cat-Women of the Moon (1953) – The title alone makes this movie worth watching. Four men and a woman find, well, cat-women on the moon. The cat-women dance. Amazingly, this movie was remade in 1958 as “Missile to the Moon”.
9. Things to Come (1936) – Script written by the famous H.G. Wells. Directed by William Camron Menzies (who later did “Invaders from Mars”). A space gun is created to shoot men to the moon. This movie is incredible.
10. Woman in the Moon (1929) – One of the very first science fiction films. Directed by Fritz Lang who did “Metropolis” two years earlier. Four men and a woman fly to the moon. Only two get back to earth.