8 Sci-Fi Movies to Watch While You Wait for ‘Rick and Morty’ Season 3

Andrew Hawkins
TV Movies
TV Movies Animated Series Rick and Morty

Everyone wants to know when the next season of Rick and Morty will drop. We are still waiting, and the clock is ticking. A year ago at SDCC, new footage hit audiences like a ton of space bricks, even if it was only a storyboard. Adult Swim surprised us all on April Fools’ when they streamed “The Rickshank Redemption” on repeat all day, but now we’re stuck wondering what to do next.

Rick in a green neon haze with a sattelite dish coming out of his head
The upcoming Rick and Morty Live Stream scheduled for June 29

Rick and Morty Seasons one and two are some of the best animated television ever. The show is a global phenomenon, and the fandom grows with each passing year. How are we supposed to just sit and watch reruns while we wait for Season three?

The key to appreciating just how good this show is lies in its influences. Dan Harmon, Justin Roiland, and Ryan Ridley know exactly what it takes to make sci-fi comedy work. Each one of them is a master of engaging storytelling and world building. There are a crazy amount of movies that attempt to do what these guys manage to pull off. So, here is a list of films worth checking out that are just a small part of what makes Rick and Morty work so well. Watch these and hope Season three gets here sooner rather than later.

Back to the Future

Doc surprises Marty as he bursts through a door
Doc and Marty are the OG Rick and Morty

Of course, this movie is the most obvious influence on the show. Back to the Future is the framework of the entire Rick and Morty universe. It’s a beloved film filled with enough science fantasy to make any viewer happy. Back to the Future may not be as adult themed as most Rick and Morty episodes, but as far as sci-fi comedies go, it’s a timeless classic.

Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park Nedry and Dodgson
Dennis Nedry laughs at your puny technology

Jurassic Park is another movie that stands the test of time. Everything in Jurassic Park works, and its influence can be seen everywhere, from television to the big screen. Jurassic Park is smart, fun and always good for a rewatch. “Anatomy Park” borrows heavily from the film, and what Rick and Morty does with the story is hilarious.

My Science Project

Professor Dennis Hopper gets zapped with inter-dimensional lights
Dennis Hopper is basically '70s Protester Rick

My Science Project is a deep cut ’80s Disney movie that came out the same year as Back to the Future but is almost entirely forgotten. A kid finds an extraterrestrial device that opens a dimensional time warp in his high school. Past and future merge into each other as he and his friends battle against dinosaurs and futuristic street punks alike. Sound familiar?

The Lawnmower Man

First person virtual reality access denied
Super virtual reality, 90s style!

Rick and Morty has a God complex. Dan Harmon stated in a recent interview that the themes of creation and creator are constantly on the minds of everyone in the Rick and Morty writer’s room. Stephen King’s The Lawnmower Man goes deep into that territory when a scientist turns the town handyman into an unstoppable cyber genius, just like Snuffles.

Back to the Future Part III

Doc Brown dancing with Clara
Smoothest time traveler ever

Sure, we’ve already covered how the original Back to the Future is must see viewing before season three hits. The difference between Back to the Future and Part III is summed up by looking directly at Doc Brown. This is the closest to Rick the Doc ever got. He’s a selfish, hard-drinking shell of himself who has all but given up on Marty. This is Doc at his Rickest.


Science fiction meets '80s punk rock

Probably the craziest movie on this list, TerrorVision is a b-movie cult classic of the highest degree. A kid and his deranged grandpa attempt to defend themselves when an intergalactic monster beams itself through their TV. It sounds nuts, but give this one a chance, and you might find a lot of comparisons between the film and the Smith family and their adventures.


Innerspace Miniaturization
PSA: Never mix booze and miniaturization

From the mind behind Gremlins, Innerspace is a movie about the science of miniaturization and serves as Joe Dante’s love letter to Fantastic Voyage. Another huge influence on “Anatomy Park”, this movie sees a shrunken drunkard fighter pilot injected into the body of a bumbling doofus. Hijinks ensue until Dante’s film kicks into high gear and gets really good.

Real Genius

Val Kilmer in Real Genius
Val Kilmer might as well be College Rick

Val Kilmer at his finest here. This is the ultimate ’80s science movie that follows college kids as they unwittingly create a death laser. The dynamic is different between the two characters, but Rick and Morty fans will find plenty of threads to connect the movie to the Adult Swim series. Real Genius even ends on a fun yet subversive note, much like the show.

Remember how awesome Rick and Morty Season two was? Here are the most Rickdiculous moments from last season that makes us want Season three to arrive already!

Andrew Hawkins
Andrew Hawkins is a fan contributor at Fandom. He has been on the fan media scene since 2011. Arriving at Fandom by way of CHUD, GUY.com and Trouble.City; Andrew loves Sci-Fi Horror movies and supervillains. His dislikes include weak plotlines and sky lasers.
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