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3 sci-fi movies on Peacock you need to watch in October

Peacock may be focusing on horror films this month, but there are a handful of great sci-fi movies that have also rejoined Peacock’s streaming library. And all three of the best sci-fi movies on Peacock in October have a direct link to Steven Spielberg.

This shouldn’t be too surprising since Spielberg has directed or executive produced several flicks for Universal Pictures, especially during his most productive years in the 1980s. Say what you will about Spielberg’s more recent flicks, but his mastery of the medium was clearly felt in all three of our choices this month, even when he wasn’t sitting in the director’s chair. So, for your next movie night, these are the three sci-fi movies on Peacock that you need to watch in October.

E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

E.T. and Elliot in E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial.
Universal Pictures

Spielberg kept his aliens a lot more mysterious in his previous sci-fi film, Close Encounters of the Third Kind. He went in the other direction with E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, one of his most successful movies as a director. In the opening moments of the film, E.T. is accidentally left behind on Earth by his people. Fortunately, E.T. quickly befriends a young boy named Elliott (Henry Thomas), as well as his siblings, Gertie (Drew Barrymore) and Michael (Robert MacNaughton).

While the kids initially keep E.T.’s presence a secret, government agents are actively trying to find him. But the longer that E.T. stays on Earth, the sicker he becomes. And because Elliot is so closely bonded with E.T., his health rapidly declines as well.

Watch E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial on Peacock.

Back to the Future (1985)

Doc and Marty in a scene from Back to the Future.
Universal Pictures

Although Spielberg didn’t direct Back to the Future, his influence was clearly felt as an executive producer on the film in support of director Robert Zemeckis and his co-writer, Bob Gale. The film stars Michael J. Fox as Marty McFly, a teenager who witnesses the first successful time travel experiment. Moments later, terrorists assassinate Marty’s friend, Emmett “Doc” Brown (Christopher Lloyd), and Marty is forced to use Doc’s DeLorean to escape into the past.

The problem is that Marty’s trip was apparently a one-way trip, and he needs the help of the younger Doc Brown to figure out a way to get home. However, Marty’s more immediate issue is that he has accidentally kept his mother, Lorraine (Lea Thompson), from falling in love with his father, George (Crispin Glover). If Marty doesn’t fix that mistake, he won’t have a future to go back to.

Watch Back to the Future on Peacock.

Cowboys & Aliens (2011)

The cast of Cowboys and Aliens.

Spielberg also executive produced Cowboys & Aliens, which was based on a little-known comic book that was seemingly created just to be made into a movie. Jon Favreau helmed the film right after he finished Iron Man 2, and he cast the then-current James Bond actor, Daniel Craig, to star in the movie as Jake Lonergan, an outlaw in the Old West who awakens without his memories. The only thing that Jake has are the clothes on his body and a weird alien device attached to his arm.

Jake may not remember who he was, but his old adversary, Colonel Woodrow Dolarhyde (Harrison Ford, in not one of his best movies), sure does, and he’s ready to put a few bullets in Jake before the aliens begin their invasion. In the face of this greater threat, Jake and Dolarhyde join forces with Ella Swenson (Olivia Wilde) to rally the townspeople of Absolution and the surrounding native tribes against a common foe.

Watch Cowboys & Aliens on Peacock.

Blair Marnell
Blair Marnell has been an entertainment journalist for over 15 years. His bylines have appeared in Wizard Magazine, Geek…
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