Science fiction… Yes, that literally translates to science that is not true, but that can only stretch so far. Part of what makes a truly great sci-fi film is its believability. So when things get too far fetched, or we know it to be factually incorrect, we lose interest very quickly. Here is our list of sci-fi movies that got the science wrong.
Enter the virus as the world’s scariest supervillain. Outbreak gave us all the chills when it was released in 1995. The thought of a virus being able to mutate and spread like that is a sobering one. But the science behind the film is not entirely accurate. The Motaba virus in the film could never have been seen using a regular microscope. An electron microscope would have been needed. Add to this that the mutation would probably not have been visible as it is the DNA of the virus that mutates. It would also have taken months, if not years to find a cure.
Sorry to crush your childhood with this one, but the beloved classic that we all grew up watching has a major science error. Although cloning does exist in modern-day science, the entire genome of the animal is needed to do it. While the film does try to compensate for this fact, so far, nobody has found a single bit of dinosaur DNA, ever. It’s safe to say then that cloning a dinosaur is close to impossible.
We loved the premise of this film and how it was all put together, but just how did Jeff Goldblum’s character distribute that computer virus on to so many devices? Nevermind that, how did he get it to so many of them all at once, and how did he manage to connect and communicate with alien technology in the first place? Maybe the aliens also use a USB port? Our guess is that we will never know. While writer and producer, Dean Devlin tried to offer a little more insight into the plot of Independence Day, it didn’t offer much clarity on the subject.
This film, with its star-studded cast, is a favorite for many. And while the whole scenario does seem quite plausible, there is a major factor that we need to clear up. The premise of the film revolves around an asteroid the size of Texas hurtling towards Earth with only 18 days to stop it. In reality, an asteroid of that size would have been detected years in advance.
This movie strived for scientific accuracy. And while it is scientifically accurate for the most part, it is still science fiction. One thing that they did get wrong was the quantum data from the black hole. To get anywhere close enough to collect data, they would have been pulled to pieces and stretched out like spaghetti by the black hole’s massive gravitational pull…this probably wouldn’t have been a good look for Anne Hathaway.
All the films on this list were massive blockbusters when they were released, and rightfully so. Even with these factual scientific errors, we still love them. And why? Because we are drawn to the unknown and science fiction can capture our imaginations, unlike any other film genre.