5 Retro Sci-Fi Movies to Blow Your Kids Minds

Ade M. Campbell
4 min readMar 26, 2020
‘Flight of the Navigator’

Experiencing lock-down under current Coronavirus conditions needn’t be a depressing or uninspiring time. It could actually be a good moment to expand your kids minds (i.e. ignite their imagination) by digging out some classic science-fiction movies from the 1980s.

With JJ Abrams’ brilliant tribute to 1980s sci-fi movies ‘ Super 8 ‘ currently streaming on Netflix, let’s take a look at five other must-see retro predecessors you can show off to the present, younger generation.

True, back then we may have been only just discovering the wonder of realistic cinematic effects, conjuring up the possible concept of aliens visiting us, beasts (Jaws) in the sea, like never before in vivid movie moments, but also potent storylines and characters were not omitted.

‘E.T. — The Extra Terrestrial’

Filled with empathy and wide-eyed delight at the prospect of an alien really landing on our planet, Spielberg’s classic presents family life with all its chaotic, exciting charm as it suddenly gets a lot messier thanks to a friendly but misunderstood visitor.

Less the tear-jerker it once was, it builds up its emotional bonds on a runway to that well-known, magical bike ride. It’s the kids versus adulthood versus government control, in one glorious bid for independence.


Less well-known but with a similar theme, three friends are summoned into space by TV-watching aliens. With two of the child actors going on to become big stars, there are moments of how much better the film could have become if it had been given more time in production. There are also subplots that were never developed. But.. the film still remains enjoyable and exciting for the way in which the kids are summoned, for their performances and for effective special effects. The director went on to make ‘InnerSpace’ which would certainly feature on a version of this list for bigger…



Ade M. Campbell

Writer, artist, permaculture explorer of new tech, generative AI, VR, web3, NFTs: Ade’s Press: adespress.blog