Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Steampunk Tuesday - Movies

Often in an attempt to explain what Steampunk is I cite movies.  There's something about Steampunk that's hard to describe, but once you see it you just get it.

I thought then it might make sense to share a list of films that are Steampunk, or have Steampunk qualities.  Now as to the quality of the films themselves, well that I will leave up to the individual (if anyone wants to add further suggestions in the comments section, they would be more than welcome!):


THE WILD WILD WEST

This film tends to be my first citation, because even if not everyone has seen it, most people know about this movie.  After all it was a Will Smith vehicle and got quite the marketing campaign in the day.  And a giant mechanical spider.





THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN

Not as universally well known, but still generally easy to cite.  I always recommend the books over the film (though, note, they are not meant for kids).





SHERLOCK HOLMES (2009 version)

This one isn't fully Steampunk but is flavoured with it.  And it was extremely popular.  And the sequel is out this winter.





THE PRESTIGE

That Christopher Nolan movie before he directed BATMAN about dueling magicians.  Heck it's even got Tesla in it (the go to guy for Steampunk inventors).




THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN

That wacky Terry Gilliam.  Love him or hate him, the movie's got that Steampunk flair. And lots of other . . . stuff . . .






A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS

This movie brings the first three of Lemony Snicket's novels together quite well, with gorgeous cinematography, and inspired whimsy.  Not really set in the past, but not really set now, it still has that Steampunk flavour.





ANY OF THOSE DISNEY MOVIES MADE IN THE 60s/70s SET IN THE EDWARDIAN PERIOD

I'm talking the likes of 20000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA, CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG, DR. DOLITTLE, SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON, even MARY POPPINS.

(And let's not forget the more recent animated Disney films:  TREASURE PLANET and ATLANTIS.) 







BIOSHOCK INFINITE

This is actually a video game coming out in 2012, but I saw the trailer for this while E3 was on, and I just think it's so totally gorgeous and so totally perfectly Steampunk that, well, check it out:




Upcoming:

THE THREE MUSKETEERS




SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS





HUGO (based on the novel THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET)




3 comments:

Eric said...

What about City of Ember?
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0970411/

Joe said...

Two French films: The City of Lost Children (La Cité des enfants perdus), a dystopian fantasy about mad scientists kidnapping children to steal their dreams and Ron Perlman as the gentle giant coming to their aid, and The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec, a Luc Besson adaptation of a popular French comic series of a novelist-adventuress in a gaslamp fantasy version of the early 20th century.

One of the first noteworthy steampunk video games was Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura, which was a fantasy RPG that basically asked "What if Middle Earth had an industrial revolution?" An excellent game for its day. Also the shooter Damnation, set in a steampunk version of the Civil War. Alas, it's a horrible, horrible game.

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