What reminds you of Steampunk? Metal gears, nuts and bolts? Steam engines and levers? Retro-futuristic society that works on steam technology? Steampunk is much more beyond that. It is the new punch in speculative fiction, and the prominent of which – Victorian Steampunk – has already captured interest around the world, spanning books and movies for almost two decades. The very fibre of it is unbounded fantasy, imagination and innovative ideas. And here I am, bringing some of my personal favourites that you can watch and add to your collection. Step back and enjoy the ride!
- The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
Ever heard of Victorian-era superheroes? Here they are. Book characters that come to life and go on an amazing adventures to prevent world domination. It has action, dialogues, speedy vehicles, troubled pasts and a toss of an ingenious villain. The film will keep you on the edge of your seat. What more could you expect?
- The Golden Compass
If you have read the His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pulman, you’ll enjoy this even more. It takes place in a different, futuristic world filled with flying machines, neo-classic cities and daemons. With Nicole Kidman playing an impeccable villainess, and dangerous animals in tow, this film sets out to surpass your expectations.
- Van Helsing
Van Helsing is the classic story which has almost everything – and which is why its fun to watch. From vampires to werewolves to monsters to villains, you name it. Not to mention that the leading actor happens to be Hugh Jackman, which the world fondly remembers as Wolverine. After Frankenstein’s monster runs free into the wild – and as a threat to society, Van Helsing, one of the personal Knights of the Holy Order, is faced with that task of killing Dracula. What follows is a long, entertaining adventure worth-watching.
- Time After Time
Time After Time, a 1927 science-fiction film, is fast, light and enthralling. It has H.G.Wells, who is unknowingly friends with Jack the Ripper, and what’s more – a time machine. Somehow he ends up in modern day San Francisco, and adventure ensues.
- Captain Nemo and the Underwater City
Jules Verne fans, rejoice. Coupled with The Journey to the Centre of the Earth and 20,00 Leagues Under the Sea, this film paints a thrilling picture of Captain Nemo and his submarine Nautilus traversing through the depths of the ocean and finding new mysteries to solve. It also involves the discovery of a cool, vast, underwater city, unexpected escapes and a battle. I recommend.
- Steam Boy
It does not get more steampunk than this. When an experiment in Russia goes terribly wrong, it results in the creation of a new circular device, until it gets quietly stowed away into secrecy. Our protagonist, Ray, is an avid tinker and has his own personal monowheel. And then, one day, a mysterious package containing the device gets into his hands. And that is just the beginning.
- Pretty much anything by Hayao Miyazaki
Hayao Miyazaki will forever remain my favourite when it comes to anime-style science-fiction films. With picturesque scenes and witty dialogue, films like Castle in the Sky, My Neighbour Totoro and Spirited Away manage to win our hearts in the first twenty seconds of watching them.
- The Time Machine
This 1960 film first set the bar for science-fiction filmmaking. Based on the book The Time Machine by H.G.Wells, this George Pal masterpiece, in the gist of it, is all about an eccentric inventor and this preoccupation with time. He first travels ahead, but disappointed with the wars, goes back centuries, only to discover that it gets only worse. What follows is his understanding of civilisations embroiled in
wars and hostility, and leaves us to conclude some facts about humanity itself.
So there you are! Put your monocles on, for I’ve given you some pointers for a steampunk marathon.