Top Ten Classic Evil-Computer Movies

Throughout history, a few despicable people have tried to conquer the world. Every one of them have failed, but succeeded in conquering quite a bit before being stopped by nature, disease or other armies.

Hollywood has introduced another threat that wants to either conquer us or destroy us. Computers have been the subject of some interesting and ominous movies, such as “Failsafe” and “Wargames.” They are incredibly useful tools and have become integrated into our everyday lives.

But what happens when we make computers that can think for themselves? Oh, boy. That’s the subject of these movies. You can watch them online and rent or purchase them from stores or online shops. They are great for movie collections and showing at parties.

I, Robot (2004)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0343818/
I, Robot (2004)

Will Smith taught us that robots aren’t always a good thing. A robot saves the life of Del Spooner, a cop. He was badly injured in an auto accident in which a man and his daughter died. A robot made the choice to save him instead of the child based on statistics. He hates robots- a term referred to as techno-phobic. He investigates the death of the man who rebuilt him after the accident, who also created the robots, but runs into strange incidents that no one else witnesses. When the central computer, V.I.K.I., stages a revolt and takes over, he is the only one who can stop it. With the help of a robot, of course.

Terminator (1984)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0088247/
Terminator (1984)

We get to see Arnold Schwarzenegger in the first few minutes of the film. His character convinces us very quickly that he’s not a friendly machine at all. His goal is to stop the future savior of humanity from being born by killing the mother, a waitress who hasn’t met the man yet. We learn that a computer system named Skynet becomes self-aware, decides that humanity needs to die, and sets about accomplishing the task.

Demon Seed (1977)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0075931/

Arguably one of the spookiest technology-horror movies ever made. Proteus IV is a computer that is supposed to run a house “Jetson-style.” Unfortunately, the computer develops an obsession with the wife of the designer. The designer dies in an “accident,” and the designer’s wife is held captive in the house. What happens next is something you have to see to believe. The ending still gives me the creeps almost 30 years later.

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0062622/

This movie was talked about for years after it was first introduced to the public. Talking computers? Thinking computers? Until this movie came out, people living in space stations and computers that could think for themselves were only the subject of the television show “Star Trek.” A computer that turned into a killer was unheard of. One of the most famous quotes from the film still resonates today, “…I’m afraid I can’t do that, Dave.” Creepy.

Colossus: The Forbin Project (1970)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0064177/

What happens when two supercomputers meet, link up, and decide to control the world? Colossus is the latest and greatest supercomputer that is designed to control America’s defense network and nukes. It detects Guardian, the Russian supercomputer. The two demand to be linked; they’ll release bombs if they’re not. The two computers expand their control to make it clear they’ll fire the missiles if they aren’t obeyed. You’ll have to see the movie to see who wins. I still get chills.

The Matrix (1999)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0133093/

This movie answers the question, “What happens if machines control the Earth?” We turn out to be a power source. Some humans escape and set up a society of their own and are determined to free humanity from this slavery. To do this, they enter the virtual reality that is hooked up to the minds of the humans called the “matrix,” where they can defy the laws of physics to a point. It’s an interesting film series and well worth having in a sci-fi collection.

Logan’s Run (1976)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0074812/

This movie was a hit with those under 30. During the late 60s, the cry went out, “Never trust anyone over 30.” In this film, computers have created a bio-dome to preserve humanity after a devastating world war that left the planet’s surface uninhabitable. To keep population numbers under control, everyone who turns 30 is killed. The youthful population believes they will be resurrected, but one cop called a Sandman, finds out it’s a lie. Some people escape; the computers want to know where; here is where the story gets interesting. This movie sparked a popular weekly television series as well. Michael York was so yummy, and Farrah Fawcett’s hair was huge. This movie is well worth watching.

Resident Evil (2002)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120804/

The Red Witch is the name of this maniac computer, and for good reason. She is evil to her inner circuit board-filled core. When a terrifying virus is released into a testing facility, she’ll kill anyone who finds out the secret- that the virus doesn’t just kill; it turns people into flesh-eating zombies. Watch this one with the lights on.

Stealth (2005)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0382992/

Weapons designers are always trying to make a more efficient weapon. How about a supersonic stealth bomber that is piloted by a computer with artificial intelligence? It’s too bad computer designers can plug in statistics, coordinates, and payloads but not conscience, compassion, or humanity. The only ones who can stop this out-of-control disaster are two pilots trained to fly these special planes. Did I mention that their brains are linked to the computers in their planes? Yikes. It’s worth watching; the scenery and special effects are wonderful.

Star Trek: First Contact (1996)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0117731/

The Borg queen is anything but regal. It is assumed that at one time, she was a humanoid who was critically injured in a horrible space accident. Machines found and repaired her; they began to add other races to the mix. As the new culture grew, the computerized and mechanized society began to expand to space, assimilating every race they came across. This is all academic to Trekkies. The film is beautifully executed; it has both tense and intensely funny scenes. It belongs in every sci-fi movie collection.

The genre of evil-computer movies is more than just a source of entertainment. It’s a reflection of our collective psyche, our fears, and our hopes about technology. As we advance technologically, these films serve as mirrors and windows – reflecting our current state and offering a glimpse into potential futures. They remind us that while technology can lead to incredible advancements, it also comes with responsibility and the need for vigilance. As we stand on the brink of an AI-driven era, these cinematic tales urge us to tread carefully, ensuring that our creations do not become our undoing.

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