As alien abductions and reports of UFO sightings continue to grow at an unprecedented rate so too does the public’s interest in this unexplained phenomena. Where better to gauge the public’s interest in a particular topic then in the books and movies it reads and views? With that in mind, here are several alien abduction movies that have been produced and viewed by millions over the last 30 years.

Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind (1977)

[amazon_link id=”B000VECAD0″ target=”_blank” ]Close Encounters of the Third Kind (30th Anniversary Ultimate Edition)[/amazon_link]

Based on a remake of Steven Spielberg’s movie Firelight that he made at the young age of 16, Close Encounters of the Third Kind is one of the first movies to seriously consider alien abductions and UFOs and how they affect the lives of those who experience these alien abductions.

Very similar to the abduction case of Betty and Barney Hill, characters in this film are abducted and then returned to Earth by what we now term as the Grey Alien species, quiet observers who for the sake of research kidnap humans and study them.

Flight of the Navigator (1986)

[amazon_link id=”B0001I562I” target=”_blank” ]Flight of the Navigator[/amazon_link]

A Disney version of alien abductions in the style of Spielberg’s Close Encounters, Flight of the Navigator is the story of a 12 year old boy who is abducted by aliens and then returned to earth 8 years later. The story focuses on the boy trying to reintegrate into his family and life after being gone for such a long time. Apparently, the boy was on a planet called Phaelon and returns to earth with star maps programmed into his brain by the aliens who abducted him.

Communion (1989)

[amazon_link id=”B003DQIPVO” target=”_blank” ]Communion[/amazon_link]

Based on the book by Whitley Strieber, the movie Communion is an eyewitness account of the author’s own alien abduction story. In similar fashion to many who have experienced alien abductions, the main character undergoes hypnosis to explain recurring memories that seem very real. Christopher Walken plays the character to the tee with bizarre, eccentric acting that lends suspense to an otherwise strange tale of a terrifying encounter.

Fire in the Sky (1993)

[amazon_link id=”B0002V7O3S” target=”_blank” ]Fire in the Sky[/amazon_link]

Fire in the Sky tells the story of an Arizona man, Travis Walton, who while traveling with co-workers witnesses a UFO, stops his car and then is struck by a beam of light. His friends leave him at the scene, and he is found disoriented, naked and rather traumatized 5 days after the encounter. The movie excels at showing the reality of Walton’s experience from the emotional aspect of his character to the physical tour of the spaceship that he entered upon being abducted.

Progeny (1998)

[amazon_link id=”6305300739″ target=”_blank” ]Progeny[/amazon_link]

A somewhat less serious movie about alien abductions where the main character is a woman who becomes pregnant and then realizes that her baby isn’t human. Lacks the sensitivity and seriousness of films such as Close Encounters and Fire in the Sky.

Altered (2006)

[amazon_link id=”B000JLQPYU” target=”_blank” ]Altered[/amazon_link]

This movie’s characters all have experienced alien abductions and are seeking revenge for their trauma. Filmed by Eduardo Sanchez of Blair Witch Project fame, this movie is in many ways more horror film than science fiction and focuses less on the alien abductions and more on the hunt for aliens. This film can currently be watched instantly on Netflix.

Night Skies (2007)

[amazon_link id=”B000KF0GT0″ target=”_blank” ]Night Skies (Widescreen Edition)[/amazon_link]

Inspired by the real Phoenix Lights UFO Sightings witnessed by thousands, the main characters in this film also encounter mystery lights in the sky as well as alien abductions. Less artfully created than previous alien abduction movies, but certainly interesting for those who enjoy the UFO phenomenon.

The Fourth Kind (2009)

[amazon_link id=”B003102JDC” target=”_blank” ]The Fourth Kind[/amazon_link]

The Fourth Kind was created to appear as a documentary of alien abductions. It is asserts that the real life disappearances of several men in Nome, Alaska over a 30 year period were actually alien abductions. The film’s creators use what appears to be real life video of abductees under hypnosis by the Doctor Abbey Tyler, played by Milla Jovovich.

It is interesting to see the progression of alien abduction movies over the last 30 years. From the serious, artistic quality of Close Encounters of the Third Kind to the Hollywood-esque horror found in Progeny and Altered, it doesn’t seem that our fascination with UFOs and alien abductions will end any time soon.

The most recent alien abduction movie to be added to the collection is Skyline, which is now playing in theaters. If I’ve missed any movies or if you’ve seen the latest Skyline, please comment below and let us know.