3. Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
Premise: Thrown into a war against invading aliens without any combat experience, one man finds himself stuck in a time loop – and realises he can use it to win the war.
Based on the Japanese novel All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka, Edge of Tomorrow stars Tom Cruise as Major William Cage, a slippery, fairly unpleasant public relations officer pressed into combat by his superiors. Despite his lack of experience, Cage finds himself reliving the day of the battle over and over, giving him a chance to win the war against the extra-terrestrial menace.
While Edge of Tomorrow‘s general premise might sound a little like Groundhog Day with aliens, what sets it apart is its sci-fi action and its willingness to explore the nature of the time loop that Cage finds himself in. The idea of a battle playing out in the same way over and over (with just one single time-looping variable) lends itself brilliantly to the big screen, and makes for epic, exciting, and engaging viewing.
Verdict: Edge of Tomorrow uses Sakurazaka’s solid story as a jumping-off point, utilising both its science fiction and action in equal parts to ensure that it delivers on its extraordinary promise.