25 votes

Space opera about a Dyson sphere

This would be Peter Hamilton's Pandora's Star and the sequel Judas Unchained. It fits to a 'T': Dyson sphere, belligerent species, powerful aliens, pyramids. At the farthest edge of the Commonwealth,...
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  • 35.9k
22 votes
Accepted

Movie I saw 30yrs ago where an abandoned facility contains cryogenic chambers containing humanoid aliens

I wonder if you're thinking of the 1983 film WAVELENGTH. Here is the trailer. In the film, two people sneak into a remote base where aliens are kept in cryo-ish tubes. They do get out of the tubes and ...
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  • 436
21 votes
Accepted

Sci fi short story about automation leading to less meaningful work

This is a story called "Manna - Two Views of Humanity's Future" by Marshall Brain. The entire story is available online at https://marshallbrain.com/manna1. As you recall, a fast food ...
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  • 13.1k
20 votes
Accepted

Short story where a couple trapped in a fallout shelter is afflicted by roaches

This sounds very much like Surface If You Can, a short story by Terry Champagne, first published in the July 1969 copy of New Worlds, and later collected in The New Tomorrows, edited by Norman Spinrad....
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18 votes

Looking for time dilation spaceship "restart the Earth's rotation" sci-fi short story, please

This sounds like One Face, a short story by Larry Niven, first published in 1965. Rather than a science officer though, the ship's AI, "The Brain", gave command to an astrophysicist ...
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18 votes
Accepted

Body-swapped racist learns about tolerance

Ah, the late 1960's, when Hollywood thought it could still get away with blackface if it was under the guise of social commentary. There are a depressing number of such movies. Since you mentioned ...
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  • 10.8k
19 votes
Accepted

Movie about two children who discover an alien stranded in an old English-style village

This is (possibly) The Watcher in the Woods from 1981. It was shown on British TV, as I recall watching it. It features a lot of the elements you describe: Boy and girl in british village setting. ...
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  • 10.2k
18 votes
Accepted

What is the name of this (possibly 40 year old) Sci-Fi novel

Sounds like The Legacy of Heorot by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. More details in the previously asked questions A planet where killing a monster brought even worse devastation Colonists kill ...
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15 votes

UK scifi book with children kidnapped in spaceship

This is a 'Space Hostages' by Nicholas Fisk, published in 1967. The ship was designed as the ultimate nuclear bunker for the government, but is hijacked by the lieutenant. He offers the children a ...
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  • 15.1k
12 votes
Accepted

American 1970's movie "DreamScape"? NO plot of aliens, children, monsters, violence, crime, dinosaurs, genetics or time travel

This must be Brainstorm, a sci-fi film from 1983 starring Christopher Walken. From wikipedia: Scientists invent a brain–computer interface enabling sensations to be recorded from a person's brain and ...
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12 votes
Accepted

Novel where the main character accidentally gives sentience to a gargoyle

This sounds very much like Magic in the Shadows by Devon Monk, the third book in the Allie Beckstrom series. The scene you recall happens in a high-class restaurant called "Gargoyle". She ...
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10 votes
Accepted

Cartoon about a boy and a robot in a red cape

Eon Kid (IMDb, Wikipedia) (or Iron kid) has a robot in a red cape Gaff, who is the robot guardian of the Eon family, and in particular Marty, the protagonist. Marty wears and wields an Iron Fist, an ...
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  • 3,601
8 votes

Sci-fi or horror, guess from Mars

Maybe Moontrap, 1988? There's a scene where a NASA astronaut (Walter Koenig) and a female alien are in spacesuits, set up a white igloo air shelter, and are then confronted by a dead Bruce Campbell ...
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  • 9,817
8 votes
Accepted

Looking for a sci-fi text about investigation on countries and continents economic output

This sounds like "The Evitable Conflict" by Isaac Asimov. Following on from the previous story 'Evidence,' in the year 2052, Stephen Byerley has been elected World Co-ordinator for a second ...
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  • 191k
8 votes

Cartoon with rubies that empower animals and awaken a legendary beast

This description sounds like the first episode of Zinba. From MyAnimeList: The juvenile Kan from the earth is summoned to the Kingdom of Toria , where he encounters attack from the giant creature ...
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8 votes

1970s/early 80s Sci fi graphic novel where a giant red and white space ship lands beside the White House

Sounds like a part of the Heavy Metal movie from 1981. There was a graphic novel too. The movie segment is partially based on the short story "So Beautiful and So Dangerous", by Angus McKie,...
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  • 9,817
7 votes
Accepted

Show/movie from the late '80s where an extraterrestrial girl causes pool balls to float above a table

As Clara notes above, this is almost certainly Starcrossed, a made-for-TV movie of 1985. As part of an entirely too-long scene in a pool hall, the billiard balls begin to float right about here.
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7 votes

Mafia-style modern vampire fantasy TV show

Kindred: The Embraced had a very mafia vibe to it. It first aired in 1996. It had romance, Nosferatu style vampires, and human looking ones. It was set in contemporary San Francisco. Although ...
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7 votes

Red eyed monster with gaze that turns you into a wooden doll?

I posted this as a comment, since it didn't seem to match on most of the details, but since you said in the comments that it may be a match, Ernest Scared Stupid does involve children being turned ...
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  • 191k
8 votes

Book about a witch that make spells by spelling out words

I found it (at least I think I did!) It's the B Magical series by Lexi Connor. Description from the first book, The Missing Magic: Eleven-year-old Beatrix just wants to be able to cast spells the way ...
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6 votes
Accepted

Manhwa or manhua where the artist of an unpopular story gets hit by electricity and isekais into his story as a side character

I believe this is A Comic Artist's Survival Guide. From Baka-Updates: Snow, a failing comic artist whose comic is about to be discontinued, reincarnates into his own comic by chance. In his comic, ...
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6 votes

'90s movie where two prisoners are being transported during an alien invasion

This could well be a very low budget sci-fi film from 1998 called Alien Species. A humorous review is available here, which bears full witness to the film's cheesiness, but a more measured summary ...
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6 votes
Accepted

What was this '60s SF novel about a future in which very long-lived humans can try being another sex?

You might be thinking of Heinlein's Time Enough for Love from 1973 - which features Lazarus Long, a more than 2000 year old man, who is bored with life. His descendants offer him a wide variety of ...
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  • 13.3k
5 votes

Woman exploring a cave has a creature jump into her face and control her

Alien 2: On Earth (1980) was the movie where spelunkers go into a cave and find a rock with alien life. Thanks for everyone's help on this one! Quoting from the plot summary on Wikipedia: Thelma and ...
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5 votes

Looking for a short story about space crew who are taken over by an alien consciousness

Not much to go on, but your description is reminiscent of "And the Gods Laughed", a 1944 short story by Fredric Brown, which you might have read in one of these compilations. The text of the ...
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  • 145k
5 votes

YA science fiction novel with title starting with the word "Uncle"

Well this is embarrassing. I found the book - in spite of being completely wrong about most of the details above. It's Panda Ray by Michael Kandel - reviewed in Asimovs twice, in 1996 and 1997. It ...
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  • 13.3k
6 votes
Accepted

Weird/experimental black & white film from early 2000s?

Sounds like The Man Who Wasn't There (2001). From Wikipedia: The Man Who Wasn't There is a 2001 American crime film written, directed, and produced by Joel and Ethan Coen. It stars Billy Bob Thornton,...
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4 votes

Body-swapped racist learns about tolerance

Possibly Watermelon Man, 1970. From Criterion: Melvin Van Peebles’s only foray into Hollywood filmmaking, Watermelon Man is one of the most audacious, radically conceived works to be financed by a ...
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  • 9,817
4 votes

Old story about plant symbiont-enabled simulated paradise

Possibly The Higher Things by J. R. Pierce, though that is from 1970 not the 1920s or '30s. The protagonist of the story, Jimmy, describes a meeting with Haskel van Manderpootz who is a stereotypical ...
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3 votes
Accepted

Anime/cartoon about a boy and a stone dog

Might it be Gargoyle of Yoshinaga House? Gargoyle of Yoshinaga House (吉永さん家のガーゴイル, Yoshinaga-san Chi no Gargoyle) is a Japanese light novel series written by Sennendou Taguchi, following Kazumi ...
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  • 191k

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