As designers, we love solving issues and appreciate visual perception. Recently there is a huge spike of science fiction movies being released. A decent number of them features inspirational UI/UX.
Some of them are very intriguing, activating all kinds of speculations about our future user interfaces and experiences.
In fact, some inspiring movie design is a convincing prophecy. Movies interface design goes beyond existing limits and existing technologies and from the very beginning becomes elegant and beautiful.
Amazingly some of the ideas are from this inspirational UI/UX movies came to live and we are either actively using them or aware of their existence, as well as some of them are happening and we will be seeing them in near future.
[Warning: The following UI/UX inspiration movie list contains spoilers.]
Do you remember Terminator 2, (T-800) Vision – HUD? Looks familiar is in it? A bit unpractical but still so iconic these days.
Nonetheless, it’s a double sided coin and some movie interfaces are being overcomplicated they are not providing a truly intuitive user experience. But again, they may widen your horizon and feed you with ideas or inspire and motivate you to design something brave and futuristic.
As a designer and movie enthusiast, I’ve watched probably thousands of movies in the past 25 years. My compiled list below will feature a fair number of influential movies, that activate designer in me and inspire me to work on UI/UX concepts and write notes.
2013 ‧ Drama/Romance ‧ 2h 6m | Get it on Amazon
The first movie that comes to my mind is “Her”. It shows almost utopian use of technology. Focusing on user experience, using invisible technologies with a minimum interface interaction, utilising speech recognition to it’s best. Envisioning how a collection of phonemes combine to form expressions. Modelling responses in correspondence to voice tone, mood and as a result providing a reach, very unique personalised user experience.
2017 ‧ Fantasy/Mystery ‧ 2h 44m | Get it on Amazon
Another great example of voice recognition technology, “Blade Runner 2049” is an abstract vision of our not far future. Taking intelligent homes and virtual assistants to a different level. It features quite a lot of inspirational UI as well as making a prediction about technology role in future of humanity.
Surrounding world is dying, it’s overpopulated. This theme consistent through the whole movie, starting with city scenes featuring favela-style buildings and megastructures giving it a sense of scale.
This movie heavily focuses on holograms and artificial intelligence. Highlighting aggressive, personalised and targeted use of advertisement. Some scenes will blow your mind and if you are into visual effects you will love this movie. Just have a look at the brilliant “take over” scene below and I love how this was achieved. I will cover this in a separate article, for now, let’s focus on UI/UX inspiration.
2008 ‧ Sci-fi/Thriller ‧ 2h 6m | Get it on Amazon
Iron Man movies are featuring highly dynamic UI/UX as well as making use of voice recognition technology. There is an awful lot of user interactions, being that a transparent touchscreen coffee table or seethrough smartphone. Practically showcasing how holograms and gesture could be working in future.
Obviously, like in any action movie, there is a balance between usability and creativity giving these interfaces its charm. This movie is so rich with HUD interfaces that it’s hard not to be inspired with these dynamic UI/UX interfaces.
2002 ‧ Drama/Mystery ‧ 2h 26m | Get it on Amazon
As a person professionally involved in digital design, I can’t wait and see this technology in action. Just imagine how massively will change the design process. Forget about computer mice and keyboards, the sweeping gestures and virtual screens will let designers be way more creative and it will dramatically increase our productivity.
This movie features a great number of astonishing ideas, that make you think and charge you with UI/UX inspiration.
2018 ‧ Sci-fi ‧ 1h 50m | Get it on Amazon
If you are into dynamic holographic displays this will be a movie you should watch and analyse carefully. There’s quite a lot of UI/UX design inspiration, each interface is quite distinct. This is influenced by the country of origin, specifics of Jaeger (Gian Robots).
2012 ‧ Drama/Fantasy ‧ 2h 4m | Get it on Amazon
A great example of how UI/UX designs could feature organic style and be implemented throughout every screen as well as being seen in HUD.
2017 ‧ Drama/Fantasy ‧ 2 hours | Get it on Amazon
Anime adaptation movie. It feels like a massive amount of design development work was involved in the creation of this movie. It’s visually rich and filled with an immense amount of interesting tech ideas.
You’ll be taken into a world full of holograms and cyborgs, and that’s where most of the FUI examples are.
2013 ‧ Action/Mystery ‧ 2h 4m | Get it on Amazon
Oblivion was one of those movies I could not resist and watch multiple times, as I had to pause the movie and analyse UI. It’s incredible and clever, it’s designed is so consistent and clean. Every UI/UX design element is so thoroughly done, these solutions compliments surrounding environments. UI design throughout the movie is quite graphical and its execution is quite unique. Definitely, a movie to watch for UI/UX inspiration.
2018 ‧ Sci-fi/Thriller ‧ 1h 40m | Get it on Amazon
It’s a beautiful movie with excellent technical execution, heavily focusing on AR technology and exploring its application in the near future. Elegant and clean use of interfaces. Anon is a great UI/UX inspiration movie.
2018 ‧ Thriller/Sci-fi ‧ 2h 19m | Get it on Amazon
Movie features interactive UI on monitors, visors, HUDs and 3D environmental signage.
2015 ‧ Sci-fi/Thriller ‧ 1h 59m | Get it on Amazon
The UI design happens to feature lots of flowing lines and shapes that make it seem like a holographic circuit board.
2010 ‧ Fantasy/Sci-fi ‧ 2h 7m | Get it on Amazon
Flynn is able to access any interface by simply placing his hand on any surface, whether it be a window or even the ground. This is very similar to how Douglas Quaid in “Total Recall” makes a call, whereby a user can control anything from anywhere by simply being in contact with the system.
2012 ‧ Thriller/Action ‧ 1h 58m | Get it on Amazon
There’s quite a good range of HUDs and GUIs in Total Recall. The movie explores different implementation ideas, you will see HUDs, hologram displays, scanners, maps, transport UI, and other UIs.