11 Best Alien-Human “Buddy” Movie Team-Ups: From ‘Star Wars’ to ‘E.T.’
In most of Hollywood’s sci-fi, aliens usually are cast as the bad guys. But sometimes, movies explore humans and intergalactic beings teaming up for a common good. With the new CG animated comedy ‘Home’ the latest to follow that path, here’s a look at a few more films that explore the human/alien dynamic.
Klaatu, Helen and Bobby in 'The Day the Earth Stood Still' (1951)
'Earth Stood Still' is one of the true classics of the science fiction genre. Michael Rennie stars as a humanoid alien named Klaatu, who comes to Earth bearing an important message and decides to live among humanity to better understand them. The film emphasizes Klaatu (in his disguise as “Mr. Carpenter”) bonding with a widowed mother (Patricia Neal) and her son (Billy Gray).
Chewbacca and Han Solo in 'Star Wars' (1977)
The Star Wars franchise features many memorable characters, but we have to spotlight the real dynamic duo of this galaxy far, far away: Han Solo and Chewbacca. The scruffy-looking nerf herder and his furry co-pilot are practically inseparable throughout the Original Trilogy, and are set to fly once again in ‘The Force Awakens.’
Superman and Lois Lane in 'Superman' (1978)
The Superman and Lois Lane dynamic took center stage in the Man of Steel's first blockbuster film (and its 1980 sequel). One of the most iconic scenes from any superhero movie comes as Christopher Reeve’s Supes carries Margot Kidder's Lois through the sky and shows the intrepid journalist what it's like to experience the world from his vantage point.
E.T. and Elliott in 'E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial' (1982)
No list of movies about human/alien relationships would be complete without E.T. The bond between young Elliott (Henry Thomas) and the stranded alien who loves Reese’s Pieces gave the movie lots of heart, and audiences lots of reasons to cry.
Spock and Kirk in 'Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan' (1982)
We've seen the bond between the reckless Captain Kirk and the logical Mr. Spock play out in countless Star Trek episodes and feature films. But never was that relationship used to better effect than in 1982's ‘Wrath of Khan,’ especially during Spock’s iconic death scene. Don’t worry, the two were reunited in the 1984 sequel.
Laliari and Fred in ‘Galaxy Quest’ (1999)
They weren't the stars of this much-loved spoof of the ‘Star Trek’ franchise, but Laliari (Missi Pyle) and Fred (Tony Shalhoub) were definitely an entertaining pair. They developed an unlikely romance as Fred and his human friends helped the Thermians defeat the evil General Sarris. Fred didn't even seem to mind the fact that Laliari's true form was less comely, and more tentacle’d.
The Iron Giant and Hogarth in ‘The Iron Giant’ (1999)
As far as best friends go, you could do much worse than a 50-foot-tall robot from outer space with a taste for power lines. The bond between young Hogarth and his alien mech was a terrific one, making the film's tragic climax all the more painful to watch.
Neytiri and Jake Sully in ‘Avatar’ (2009)
In James Cameron’s blockbuster, disabled Marine Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) went above and beyond the call of duty when it came to making friends with the local Na'vi population. His consciousness was transferred into a Na'vi body, allowing him to experience the wonderful world of Pandora like a native. And in the end, he chose his new family and lover, Neytiri (Zoe Saldana), over his old life. Who wouldn't?
Paul, Graeme and Clive in ‘Paul’ (2011)
British comedy duo Simon Pegg and Nick Frost reunited again for this goofy sci-fi road trip, with the pair joined by a crass, sarcastic CG alien voiced by Seth Rogen.
Echo and Friends in ‘Earth to Echo’ (2014)
The familiar E.T. formula inspired another human/alien buddy movie: 2014's ‘Earth to Echo.’ The found-footage film follows a group of teens as they encounter a stranded alien robot they christen “Echo.” As usual, the adults just want to break up this beautiful friendship.
Oh and Tip in ‘Home’ (2015)
This human/alien buddy comedy has an interesting hook, as it follows what happens when an alien race called the Boov decide to take over Earth and banish humanity to a remote desert world. Only a clever teenager (voiced by Rihanna) and an exiled Boov named Oh (Jim Parsons) stand a chance of saving the world.