Science fiction’s subgenre known as “steampunk” frequently transplants futuristic images and technology into eras when steam power predominates, such as the Victorian era or the Wild West. The genre frequently features mechanically rooted clothing and future technologies for the time. Especially at conventions and with cosplay, the genre has developed a cult following and produced some of the most visually striking media. These are the top-ranked steampunk movies and television shows.
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Atlantis: The Lost Empire
Disney’s post-Renaissance era saw the June 3, 2001 debut of Atlantis: The Lost Empire. There should be a live-action version of this Disney classic, which stars Princess Kida, one of the most underappreciated princesses of all time.
Milo Thatch (Michael J. Fox), a linguist and cartographer at the Smithsonian, is continuing his grandfather’s tradition by looking for the lost city of Atlantis in the animated movie, which is set in 1914. The movie is jam-packed with action and cutting-edge technology that perfectly complements the plot. Disney+ is now offering Atlantis: The Lost Empire for streaming.
a video series that was created by René Echevarria and Travis Beacham, made its debut on August 30, 2019. Cara Delevingne and Orlando Bloom feature in the series, which is about mythological beings who have fled their war-torn homeland and gathered in a city with rising tensions. Even though the show was cancelled, fans are eagerly anticipating season two. You can now watch Carnival Row on Prime.
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
An adaptation of Hiromu Arakawa’s Fullmetal Alchemist manga series, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood debuted on April 5, 2009. In Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, brothers Eric and Alphonse explore their quest to recover their bodies and find the philosopher stone. After the 2003 series deviated too much from the original content, the 2009 series was created.
Although the 2009 series is regarded as one of the best anime series of all time, some fans believe the 2003 series warrants a sequel. You can now watch Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood on Hulu and Funimation.
Hellboy, directed by Guillermo del Toro, debuted on April 2, 2004, and it was based on Mike Mignola’s Dark Horse Comic graphic novel. Hellboy, played by Selma Blair, Jeffery Tambor, and Ron Perlman, works to protect the Earth from supernatural perils in the movie. Hellboy is at least steampunk-adjacent due to the character Kroenen’s physical augmentation, the usage of historical figures like Rasputin and World War II, and the weaponry. In 2008, a sequel to the film, titled Hellboy II: The Golden Army, was released, and Perlman has stated that he intends to produce a third Hellboy film. HBO Max currently has Hellboy available.
Howl’s Moving Castle
Howl’s Moving Castle is the pinnacle of Ghibli productions. A young girl named Sophie is cursed by a witch and transforms into an elderly woman in the 2004 movie, which was written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki and is largely based on the 1986 novel by Diana Wynne Jones about a struggle between kingdoms.
Howl’s Moving Castle earned an Academy Award nomination and went on to become one of the most commercially successful Japanese movies in history. HBO Max is presently streaming Howl’s Moving Castle.
Mortal Engines was produced with assistance from Peter Jackson and debuted on November 27, 2018, under the direction of Christian Rivers. Hera Hilmar, Robert Sheehan, and Hugo Weaving star in the 2001 novel by Philip Reeves that served as the basis for the movie. The film, which uses steampunk imagery to once more blend the future and the past, is set 1,000 years in the future in a post-apocalyptic world where towns are constructed on wheels. Despite being a huge failure, the movie features some of the best steampunk imagery.
Zack Snyder, who also served as the film’s co-writer, directed Sucker Punch, which had its debut on March 25, 2011. The movie follows Babydoll, a young woman who is imprisoned to a mental facility and experiences many fantasies while trying to flee. Sucker Punch has been categorized as belonging to the subgenre because of its hazy distinctions between the past and the present and fantastical sequences with steampunk elements.
Even though the movie garnered a notably negative reception, the picture stars Emily Browning, Oscar Isaac, Carla Gugino, and Vanessa Hudgens, who all give it their all. However, Sucker Punch has developed a cult following and has a fantastic soundtrack. Snyder claims that there is an unreleased edit of Sucker Punch that is superior to the one that has already been made public.
The City of Lost Children
Marc Caro and the legendary Jean-Pierre Jeunet co-directed the French science fiction film The City of Lost Children (La Cité des enfants perdus). Daniel Emilfork plays a scientist who has lost the power to dream and now takes children’s dreams in the 1995 movie. In the movie, Ron Perlman and Judith Vittet play the kidnapped child’s elder brother and sister, respectively. The City of Lost Children garnered favorable reviews from critics despite being a financial failure and boasts stunning, expansive vistas.
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
On July 11, 2003, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen made its debut. It is largely based on the comic book by Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill. Dracula, Tom Sawyer, and Dorian Grey are three literary figures from the Victorian era of the 19th century who work as a vigilante group using weapons and technology from the future despite existing in the past.
Featuring a sizable ensemble led by Sean Connery in his final live-action movie to be released in theaters and Shane West, the movie was helmed by Stephen Norrington. Streaming of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen is available right now on Hulu.
The Legend of Korra
The Legend of Korra, an Avatar: The Last Airbender spin-off, debuted on April 14, 2022. The Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko-created television series is set 70 years after Avatar: The Last Airbender. One of the most subversive animated shows ever, the program centers on the new Avatar Korra as she strives to control her abilities.
The Legend of Korra, which has gotten favorable reviews from critics and is beloved by viewers, builds on the technological innovations of the previous season by incorporating far more steampunk. Netflix and Paramount+ both presently offer The Legend of Korra.
On November 27, 2002, Disney released the underappreciated film Treasure Planet. It was the first non-musical directed by John Musker and Ron Clements since The Great Mouse Detective. Despite the animated movie’s failure at the box office, it was nominated for an Academy Award and has developed a cult following.
The movie stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Brian Murray, Emma Thompson, and Martin Short and is based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island, published in 1883. The movie has a similar narrative to the book, but uses space instead of the open sea for the backdrop, which allows for a lot more steampunk elements. Disney+ now offers streaming of Treasure Planet.
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