Which are the most steampunk films ever made?

wild wild west steampunk film
Will Smith and Kevin Kline

Filmonic posted an interesting article earlier this year which showed a list of the 11 (why that particular number is beyond me when 10 is a perfectly rounded figure) films ever made that have a steampunk element.

They’ve listed them as:

  1. Metropolis (1927)
  2. The Fabulous World of Jules Verne (1958)
  3. Castle in the Sky (1986)
  4. The City of Lost Children (1995)
  5. Wild Wild West (1999)
  6. The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)
  7. Steamboy (2004)
  8. Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004)
  9. The Golden Compass (2007)
  10. Sherlock Holmes (2009)
  11. Tai Chi 0 (2012)

Of course the list could have been condensed to a more satisfying list of 10 if they’d left Sky Captain off. Not that it’s a bad film, I secretly enjoyed it. However, the era is arguably too late and is more dieselpunk – something that Filmonic mention in the article as well.

Metropolis has been long regarded as one of the earliest steampunk films, but I can’t help but feel that it’s essentially dieselpunk and the steam elements are only there to add dynamic movement to the set because sound wasn’t used back then.

Would you say this is the final list of films with a heavy steampunk theme running through them? I think that replacing Metropolis with Hellboy and taking Sky Captain out would balance things a little bit more.

What do you think?

5 thoughts on “Which are the most steampunk films ever made?

  1. I was always surprised at how Steampunk Back to the Future part III turned out to be. Maybe it was a coincidence, but I like to think some of the production team were Steampunk fans and tilted the aesthetic in that direction. It has: time travel (obviously) akin to Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, Doc Brown’s clunky sniper rifle, the anachronistic and impractical refrigerator. And lastly and most definitively it has a flying time traveling locomotive that literally runs on steam (and what looks like magnets?).

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