The 10 Best Hacker Movies of All Time: A Must-Watch List for Tech Enthusiasts

Jonny Hector

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The Top 10 Best Hacker Movies of All Time

Ever since at-home computers were introduced, a new demographic of computer fans emerged, fascinated by the many, hard-coded possibilities of the world wide web. As coding is much like learning an entirely new language, it increases the creativity needed to visualize computer coding for the untrained mind. Here are the top 10 best hacker movies of all time, ranging from as recent as 2015 all the way back to the early 80s, making the concept of hacking vastly variable in the ways it is presented.

10. Swordfish (2001)

Swordfish is a campy, popcorn movie addition that begs the question, “Who was in charge of makeup and hair for John Travolta’s character?” The coding in this movie looks fairly authentic and visually appealing.

9. The Fifth Estate (2013)

Based on Julian Assange and his history of international government affairs, The Fifth Estate is a tedious retelling of a story behind this controversial creator of WikiLeaks. While it’s not the best example of a hacker movie, the very real nature of the story is beyond intriguing and Benedict Cumberbatch gives a powerful performance.

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8. Live Free or Die Hard (2007)

Tasked with yet another run-of-the-mill mission, John McClane brings in a young computer hacker for questioning, but ultimately uses his skills against a greater foe that threatens to crumble American society by hacking the national computer infrastructure.

7. Tron (1982)

Betrayed by an executive of the company he works for, computer engineer Kevin Flynn is mysteriously transported inside the master control program after attempting to hack into it. While the special effects may be a bit silly in today’s world, the color palette and styling of the scenes is what makes this movie as special as it is.

6. Sneakers (1992)

Full of clever plot twists and turns, Sneakers is a classic take on the ‘get the team together’ trope of a good heist movie. While it’s mostly characterized by puzzles and mind games, this movie still brings a special quality to the list that thematically separates it from the others.

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5. Blackhat (2015)

Focusing on the cyber-connectivity of the world and the dangers of it, Blackhat does a good job of thrilling its audience with real-world applicable fears. The hacking is also cleverly visualized in this film by x-ray shots of computer parts and multiple lights traveling through the interior of the machines.

4. Hackers (1995)

Unique to this film, the coding sequences are creatively visualized as a large city of buildings made of code that must be located with proper time and efficiency.

3. Wargames (1983)

Since this is the most dated of the movies on this list, the hacking is portrayed as a very basic black and green screen with normal vernacular to keep the audience engaged.

2. Who Am I (2014)

What makes this film unique is the creative way it portrays the interactions between hackers in the online world.

1. The Matrix (1999)

Famous for its unique style and story, the hacking in this movie is a lot of zeros and ones on a screen but is gracefully translated into intricately choreographed action sequences with impressive special effects.

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Looking for more movies to watch? Check out these lists:
– The Best Chris Hemsworth Movies
– The Matrix Movies in Order

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