With Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 wrapping up at Marvel, we began to wonder what were the best space operas? Let’s find out.
Movie goers have always been fascinated with films that take place in outer space. Infuse that with some fun adventures, and you’re guaranteed a big hit. With Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 hitting big in theaters and bringing fans to tears since it’s their last adventure, now is the time to look for other space operas to fill that gap. What should you be watching?
This film starts as a joke, making fun of the culture that can spring up around franchises like star trek. We see the cast attending a convention celebrating this long over TV series. Most of them seem like they want to be doing anything else, but we hear about the problems of them being typecast as their characters. At first, they think they are being courted for a new show but quickly find out that they are actually being recruited to help an alien race free themselves from being enslaved.
Essentially, star trek gets the Three Amigos treatment. While they feel entirely out of their depth dealing with this very real situation, they all step up and do what they can to complete their most important mission. The film works way better than it has any right to. The world they build within the movie feels vast and lived in while also being something new in the genre at the time. It works great and is a fun watch. A great twist that makes it one of the best space operas.
Firefly started as a series on FOX, and while only lasting one short season, it gained enough of a following to warrant a full-length theatrical film. The series centered on the crew of the ship Serenity. Most of them are people looking to disappear or hoping to make some money pulling any job they can get hired for. This helped the show have a great variety in storytelling during its small run.
When it jumped to the big screen, they tried to take everything they had done on the show previously and put it on a bigger scale. It was great to see all the characters fans loved returning and participating in the big adventure while we also got to revisit some fun locations from the series. One of the great things the series did was make this feel like a real world. People acted naturally, and we got to see how things operated outside of the confines of the ship. This feels like the closest thing to the Guardians movies that existed before they joined the MCU. Even though it lived a short life, it is still one of the best space operas.
Based on the old comic strips and movie serials, this 80s update to the character hit theaters trying to ride the wave of space films in the wake of Star Wars. An American football star and his girlfriend get mixed up with a Russian scientist. Before long, they find themselves on a trip to the planet Mongo. The planet is ruled by the evil Ming the Merciless, who intends to destroy Earth. Now Flash has to use his athletic ability to bring together the citizens of Mongo to stop Ming once and for all.
This film got a boost once again after the star and the film itself showed up in the Seth MacFarlane film Ted. The main characters were obsessed with the film and Flash himself, Sam J. Jones even shows up as himself. He would come back in the sequel as well. While it’s a little cheesy now, the film is still a lot of fun, and who can argue that the title song by Queen isn’t amazing?
This troubled series has had many ups and downs throughout its production history. The original 1984 film went through various versions before David Lynch could finally make the one released in theaters. He has talked about the horrible time he had making the film and how it was taken from him before he could complete it. Denis Villeneuve has been given a shot at it and has tried to take it back to what it was initially supposed to be from the book series.
A young man with an important destiny is charged with controlling the most valuable element in the universe. Spice. As many factions begin to fight over control of the planet, he is thrust into the middle of a war. While only the first part of the film has come out so far, fans have been positive about its direction and are excited to check out the next installment.
While Star Wars seems to get the praise for its world-building, star trek helped push the outer space set adventures to a whole different level over numerous different incarnations. Starting back in 1966, the crew of the USS Enterprise was tasked with exploring space while trying not to interfere in the workings of other worlds. We followed the cast as they visited a new world almost every episode. This spawned multiple series that continues to this day and even a film series with the original cast.
Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan is probably the most well-known of those films. The crew of the Enterprise run into an old enemy and learns that he has plans to steal Project Genesis. With this device, he can destroy any world he wants while also bringing dead planets back to life. Since he blames Kirk for all his misery, he plans on destroying him and anyone else that gets in his way. The sprawl of Star Trek is vast, and there are always great stories to check out, no matter what generation you are into. It really is one of the best space operas.
This is the franchise probably most associated with the phrase Space Opera. In 1977, George Lucas wanted to make a fun space adventure that reminded him of old serials from his youth. He ended up making one of the biggest franchises in the world. Now owned by Disney, Star Wars is still going strong, with numerous series airing on Disney+ and more films in the works.
The original film now retitled A New Hope, was a great example of the hero’s journey and featured the evil Darth Vader as the main antagonist. As the film series went on, more and more lore was added to grow the world of Star Wars in numerous directions. Cartoons, films, and even cereal followed from the supernova that A New Hope spawned.
Out of the original Trilogy, most fans point to The Empire Strikes Back as the favorite film. The story goes a little darker, and various characters have to confront their flaws and mortality. With the big reveal that Darth Vader was, in fact, Luke Skywalker’s father, fans could not wait for another entry into the series. We see our heroes left in tatters as Han Solo is frozen in carbonite, Luke loses his hand, and the Empire seems unstoppable. Luckily we had plenty more Star Wars to come to keep fans hooked.
What do you think are some of the best space operas? Let us know in the comments.