I realize that my number one influence for Steampunk was actually La Cité des Enfants Perdus which is the proper French title for my favorite movie of all time, The City of Lost Children. The visuals are striking and extremely Steampunk, which is odd to me because I wasn’t thinking of this as Steampunk until just today when I was thinking about the Cyclops (the fat-faced guy with the eye thing is actually a blind man in a cult that kidnaps and sells children to the really old guy).
“The City of Lost Children is…the story of Krank, a tormented scientist who sets about kidnapping local children in order to steal their dreams and reverse his accelerated ageing process. When Krank’s henchmen kidnap his brother, local fisherman and former circus strongman One (Ron Perlman) sets out on a journey to Krank’s nightmarish laboratory, accompanied by a little orphan girl called Miette.” – Umbrella Productions
It’s a weird quest story with a lot of strange world elements. The ocean is polluted (possibly poisonous, judging by the milky green hue), the world is dark (I don’t think there’s any day light in this movie), the characters are all incredibly well-rounded. Almost everyone even the smallest side characters has something they want that they can’t have.
And because trailers in the 90’s were almost as fucking weird as the movie itself, enjoy this:
The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.
And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!