The science fiction film landscape is populated by creatures and creations that tempt and titillate, as well as challenge and discomfort. They are aliens and robots, figures that are exotic and striking enough to be seen as different, but familiar enough that we are curious about them. Cinema is littered with aliens, robots, human hybrids, and everything in between that have been given some amount of human-like qualities with which to identify. In the future, it seems, we do not discriminate based on looks, and in fact, embrace one another. Perhaps it’s a hopeful vision, but regardless, there are those figures that are visibly different than humans, those that we know are of a species not of our own, yet they are those that are still attractive, sexy and intimate.
Now, in undertaking this search for such creatures, we should try to come up with some rules, or guidelines at least. In the fantastic Under the Skin, for example, Scarlett Johansson is an alien; but really in name only. For most of the movie, there is nothing physically different about her, so if we are saying she is a sexy alien, we’re kind of just saying she is a sexy woman. So there has to be something slightly different. Sure, Thor is technically an alien, but he looks and talks and has all the composition of a Chris Hemsworth. Lisa from Weird Science, David from Prometheus, they’re sexy, but they are essentially the actors Kelly LeBrock and Michael Fassbender.
Thus, we will go a little bit deeper and identify those attractive, tempting figures in film that may be played by compelling actors, but have some identifiable differences that make sure you know they aren’t human. They may give you pause while also giving you other feelings. With respect to Milla Jovovich in The Fifth Element, Natasha Henstridge in Species, and all those terminators out there, these are the sexiest aliens and robots on film.
10. Maria – Metropolis
We must give honor first to the inaugural seductive robot, the first female creation to capture the attention of audiences around the world. The iconic 1927 silent film from Fritz Lang features actress Brigitte Helm in the role of Maria, as well as her android counterpart, the first robot ever shown in the history of film. There is indeed a certain sexiness to Maria, given feminine looks and curves. While she may not necessarily hold up to today’s standards (in terms of special and technical effects), she has inspired so many in films and other media, having once and forever blurred the lines of sexuality.
9. Pris – Blade Runner
Played by Daryl Hannah, Pris is the iconic ‘basic pleasure model’ from the celebrated science fiction film, Blade Runner. She is a replicant, a robot, with white makeup over her face, except for a blue streak across her eyes. Pris is both tempting and dangerous, as Harrison Ford’s Deckard finds out. With super human strength, but perhaps not the most intelligence, Pris Stratton is a pivotal character in Ridley Scott’s fantastic film. Her New Wave-inspired outfit certainly dates her, but still remains eye-catching, looking both the naïve innocent, as well as the smoldering killer.
8. Gaila – Star Trek
She only got a brief appearance on screen, but it certainly was a memorable one. In the reboot/prequel to the Star Trek film franchise, as imagined by J.J. Abrams, Gaila is Uhura’s sexy roommate, as well as a love interest (really dalliance) with James Kirk. With red hair and green skin, we meet the Star-fleet cadet in a state of undress, fooling around with Chris Pine’s reckless, cocky, future captain. They unfortunately, at least for Kirk, are rudely interrupted. Funnily enough, this will not be the only time we feature Star Trek on this list, nor will it be the only time we talk about a sexy green alien.
7. Angelina Jolie – Beowulf
We’re going CGI for this next one, and who could blame us? Angelina Jolie lent her voice and likeness to Robert Zemeckis‘ imagining of Beowulf. The great mythological hero from one of the most well-known lore of all time confronts the great beast Grendel, who is plaguing his small town. Well, Beowulf takes out Grendel, but his more powerful, vengeful, and indeed tempting mother lies in wait. Jolie is Grendel’s mother, a succubus, and she tries to transfix Beowulf just as she does the audience. In a most memorable scene, a nude, gilded, (and animated) Jolie emerges from the water, with her tell swinging seductively.
6. Dren – Splice
A divisive and certainly unforgettable genre-bending film, Splice is quirky and intimate, while also being a science fiction film about messing with genetics. Sarah Polly and Adrien Brody play god and create human-animal hybrid, adopting it (her) as their own. The film features a staggering sex scene that left many viewers stunned. One half of that scene is Dren, the laboratory creation. She has wings and a tail, no hair on her head and a wide forehead, as well as some curiously bending legs. She’s exotic but still familiar, a female but not necessarily a human female. Played by Delphine Chaneac, if you have seen Splice, you know that Dren is magnetic and will make you feel unsettled about your urges.
5. Spock – Star Trek
We’re sticking with the latest iteration of the Star Trek franchise, one that for all its coolness and fun, is also littered with young and attractive actors. One of them would be Zachary Quinto, the talented hunk who plays Spock. Now, perhaps it’s bending the rules a bit here, but Spock does have those pointy ears, so it makes him a distinguished alien and not just some actor playing someone called an alien. What’s more, it’s not only the domain of women to play attractive aliens. Not only is Spock incredibly smart and logical (and also apparently tough to date), but he sure has a lot of physical prowess too, taking on Khan at the end of Star Trek into Darkness in its dramatic finale.
4. Neytiri – Avatar
Our guide into the world of Avatar, Neytiri, played by the talented Zoe Saldana, was the fierce and beautiful heroine in James Cameron’s massive science fiction epic. Blue-skinned, with long limbs and a tail, standing some eight feet tall, Neytiri is relatable, sympathetic and indeed sexy. She becomes the romantic lead opposite Sam Worthington, while also proving a formidable warrior. It’s hard not to fall for a strong, independent woman who is also confident and sexy. Thank goodness she is coming back for the much anticipated sequel.
3. Jude Law – A.I.
Again, we may be slightly bending the rules here, but Jude Law’s robot in Artificial Intelligence is both sexy and identifiably a robot. Well, he is made to have excessively clean-cut hair, a shiny glow to his skin, and an all around plastic feel. So he counts, and how so! He plays Gigolo Joe, a male prostitute designed to fake love, not too dissimilar from Pris. The underrated Steven Spielberg film has aged well, and Law’s turn is both slightly comic, partly tragic, and totally captivating.
2. Gamora – Guardians of the Galaxy
Making her second appearance on this list – she is the go to woman for sexy aliens and foreign creatures apparently – Zoe Saldana, now clad in green instead of blue. One of last summer’s beloved Guardians of the Galaxy, Gamora is the agile assassin who happens upon Chris Pratt and other wayward travelers in Marvel’s blockbuster. She has some family issues to battle (Karen Gillian as her sister Nebula is an honorable mention on this list), and she runs around the universe, determined and no-nonsense. Saldana is some sort of sci-fi blockbuster queen, appearing in Guardians, Avatar and Star Trek, and of course their sequels.
1. Ava – Ex Machina
The newest entry to this field tops the list, coming in the form of Alicia Vikander. Or at least part of Alicia Vikander. Half curvy metal and wires, and half the beautiful actress, Ava from Ex-Machina is a self-aware robot that is being tested by a young scientist while also trying to play a game. She is flirtatious and sexual, and for a good reason – she is trying to break free of her cage. Ava, along with the entirety of this film by Alex Garland, challenges the viewer to think about what it means to be alive, what it means to be human, and the ways in which we find ourselves attracted to someone or something. And it’s usually not in our control – a fitting finale to this discussion.