Browsing category: Film Reviews


Mr Hayden – thank you so much!  I do indeed like all things Steampunk and this set of two animation shorts is really rather good silly Steampunk fun.  Edgar and the Voyagers was apparently a cartoon done for a contest, but I’ve yet to find out any more about it so far.  There’s two episodes (with a cliffhanger!) following the troubles of Edgar – your average highly intelligent adventurous 13 year old who’s lost his parents and goes out to find them with his trusty manservant and team of Russian marines.  Episode 1, Episode 2 and the trailer. Quite silly, but quite good fun and only about 3 minutes a pop.  Shame there’s no more, really – I’d have liked to have followed the adventures of Edgar, Lux and friends.  Thank you, Mr Hayden.

Stardust Film – Updated Site

Posted by on June 8th,2007

Stardust Updated Site

Just a quick post to let anyone interested know that the Stardust movie official site has been updated, and now has a few more videos, wallpapers, a rather poor game, and images to take a look at, mostly about the village called Wall.  There’s very little airship action to be seen, but you will get to repeatedly see Mr De Niro say “Touché” and that can’t be too bad.  *chuckles*  Who would have thought you would find Ms Pfeiffer in a goat-chariot, either.  It still seems to be on course, and reading Mr Gaiman’s journal seems to give the impression that he’s not dissapointed in it either – this all bodes well!

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Steam Trek: The Moving Picture!

Posted by on June 2nd,2007


This is rather amusing indeed! While it has apparently been around the conventions, it was new to me so may still be new to some others – it’s a reimagining of Star Trek, named Steam Trek, as if created by someone much like Georges Méliès in 1902 and deeply Steampunk. Glorious paper spaceships on string, two dimensional enginerooms, puppets, bombs and dastardly men who kidnap headstrong young ladies! Oh what fun. chuckles

The above version was cut slightly for YouTube, but the extended version (as well as a rather nice, if slow, animated cog flash interface) can be found on the creators site. It’s fantastic to see Sooty there too – Izzy Wizzy indeed. Thanks to both the Emperor of the forums and Mr Von Slatt for pointing this out!

Posted by on May 27th,2007


So, I’m *ahem* only 53 years late in watching this, one of the most iconic of Steampunk movies, though the majority of those years I hope I’d be forgiven for. But yes – I’ve finally watched the Disney movie, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. (Amazon UK/US).  It was fantastic, even after over half a century, with beautiful interiors, rivets a plenty, the wonderful Captain Nemo and that fantastic giant squid.  Others have spoke of it far better than I can, and I really do feel quite foolish even trying to do it justice myself.  So many other things just make that much more sense, now.
However, there was one part of it that I found myself strangely drawn to – the dinner scene.  Finding all they need at the bottom of the ocean, I wondered about some of the ingredients mentioned – sea cucumber, sea snake, barnacles and blowfish.  For those interested, apparenty sea cucumber can be bought dried, and acts somewhat like tofu in its form and lack of taste (but willingness to aquire other flavours), but sea snake doesn’t seem to get eaten much, possibly because it contains a venom that affects the nervous system (still, didn’t stop people eating blowfish).  Still, interesting and it all facinated me, Captain Nemo getting all he needs from the ocean, from food to peace of mind.

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The Golden Compass – New Trailer

Posted by on May 23rd,2007


We posted the previous trailer, but this one has a bit more content to it – and any day with an airship is a good day, in my opinion.   The film (of the book) The Golden Compass, is set to be released almost worldwide between the 5th and 7th of December, and I must say that this, along with Stardust, are set to have some beautiful airship featuring Steampunk films to enjoy.  A most excellent moustache from Mr Elliott too.

I must ask – do sharper eyed readers than I also suspect that to be a Wimshurst Machine in the background there?  A very nice touch, if it is.  Better quality videos can be found over at Yahoo.  Thanks to Mr Tyrell, and to the people at Digg (where I read it this morning – there was much oohing and aahing).

Mechanical Flying Lantern Fish from Iyasakado's Steampunk Animations

Oh now – these are wonderful and a perfect example of all that is good about Flash based animation!  Mr Sandorm sends word of a Japanese site called Iyasakado that has a large section called “Steel Fantasia”.  Featured there are no less than five wonderfully Steampunk flash animations:

  • Commuters:  All’s fair in love, war, and getting that last seat on the morning commute!  Businessmen must be prepared for all out WAR to succeed – an airship and biplane filled battle metaphor for getting ahead in business.
  • Usigaeru:  A heartwarming animation featuring a little mouse, an unexpected friend, and an amazing battle/chase scene with mechanised creatures galore!  Quite lovely, this one.
  • Harunohi:  My personal favourite.  A student takes the cog-train to class, but falls asleep and takes an amazing journey through the sky-ocean!  Sweet and lighthearted.
  • Two Legged Tank:  Completely war based this one.  From what I can tell (it’s quite dialog heavy) a batallion of walking tanks conceive of a strategy to take out a well fortified enemy tank.  Rather ‘People’s Steampunk’ this one.
  • Ornithopter:  A journey across skies and sea, from one country to another, over borders and battles, this little ornithopter flies with just one mission.

As you can perhaps tell, my two favourites are the more lighthearted of the bunch – Harunohi and Usigaeru.  Not knowing Japanese, I’m afraid I cannot tell you any more about these, but they are lovely.  They may take a little while to load at first (being flash based) so do give them time.  Thank you so much, Mr Sandorm – you have very much put a smile on my face.

Stardust – Film

Posted by on March 31st,2007

UdW7rbcfGzs I post this trailer, because it’s on YouTube and thus fits nicely in the post, but really – you want to see the one at the official Stardust movie site – it’s much lovelier! And if that’s not quite enough for you, then there’s an alternative trailer at Yahoo. So perfectly amazing looking – airships! But what can you say about Stardust? It’s from the book by Mr Neil Gaiman (and what a delightful teller of tales he is) where a young man leaves the small Victorian village he resides in, to find a recently fallen shooting star as a token of his love for the village beauty. Of course, it doesn’t go as simple as he may have imagined it would.

I’ve got the book less than 4ft from where I’m sitting and I’m going to have to read it now – I mean, the trailer has airship pirates in it! Perfectly wonderful – between this and The Golden Compass, it seems that 2007 is the year for Steampunk airship films. I’m not about to complain. August cannot come soon enough for this! Thanks to the Steampunk Forum members, the people of The Clockworkers Journal, and Sci-Freaks for pointing it out – you’d have thought I’d have noticed by now!

Nikola Tesla

Tesla’s been getting a lot more publicity recently, and that makes me smile.  A wonderful, unappreciated inventor of so many things, and inadvertantly probably the greatest force in ending the steam-centric age and ushering in electricity!  A world treasure, and just an all round facinating character – Fortean Times did an article on him only recently, though as I’m not a subscriber I cannot see much more than the first of 5 pages.  However, if you’d like something a bit more moving-picture based, there’s a half hour, 80’s documentary on Tesla over at the Internet Archive.  (There seems to be some conspiracy theory tags on it – it’s not related to that, as far as I can see.  You may ignore as you wish.) Were it not for Tesla, we’d not have so many of the linchpins of the modern world – but also of the richness of our fictional world.  Mad scientists with giant tesla coils have become such a mainstay, that we can barely imagine an over-the-top scientific genius without one.  Thanks to reader Charles to give me another excuse to post about the master of electricity.


Crabfu (yes, he of amazing steambots fame) wrote to point out this lovely little animation from Mr Gavin McCarthy. Seems to be the first major move into Steampunk from what I can see of his online portfolio, but the animation is both lovely and very brief – a tireless tinkerer tries to fix a bike, with seemingly no progress until… Well, you can take a look, it’s only a minute long. Apparently YouTube’s compression has done unfortunate things to the quality, but Mr McCarthy is apparently going to upload a better version some time in the future.

Lovely though – quite enchanting in its brevity! (And what a Steampunk steam vessel!) Thanks, Mr Huang!

The Fabulous World of Jules Verne – Film

Posted by on February 26th,2007

VGRj0nV-ZVENow, there are others who know far more about this black and white film from 1958, but for those of us for whom this is new, The Fabulous World of Jules Verne is a delightful find.  Reader Zobop sent the link to the trailer, and it just makes me grin from ear to ear – the techniques used within it were apparently called “Mysti-Mation”, and they certainly don’t make them like they used to, that is most apparent.

Thrill, as a brilliant scientist wrestles with powers beyond his ken!

Gasp, as he and his assistant are kidnapped and held against their will!

Smile, as puppet octopi and cardboard cutouts deliver effects that harken back to less CG days.

This, most certainly goes at the top of my ‘desired’ list for DVDs in future.