Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Monday (aaak! Tuesday) Night Magical Movie: The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

Since I'm working on my Steampunk Fairy, it seemed only appropriate to give a nod to a way fun Steampunk movie, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. For those who may wonder what that means, Steampunk is a sub genre of science fiction and alternate history in which the late 19th century is re-imagined featuring fantastical gadgets and inventions that didn't actually exist during that time period. Think Victorian science fiction.
On a side note, I missed posting on Monday, due to a relatively unusual event, I actually had homework from my day job, and nothing to do with steampunk. In addition to my fantasy art career, I'm also a graphic designer for a display company, if you ever been to a grocery store or movie theater, chances are you've seen a cardboard display made by the company I work for. In the office we have only a few people so we wear many hats which means that "Graphic Designer" also encompasses less creative duties such as entering orders onto spreadsheets, answering the phone, and sending out samples, it's a pretty glamourous gig, I tell you! So we had major orders on Monday, and had to bring some work home...but I digress...

Lets get on with the movie! The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen is a 2003 offering from director Stephen Norrington. (Blade, Aliens) In true Steampunk tradition, this is an alternative Victorian era in which several great fictional characters join forces and talents on a top secret mission. It's a fantastic re-imagining of Victorian times where magic and science collide.

Who is the League? Allan Quatermain (Sean Connery..mmmm) is a classic adventurer and crack shot who has been magically protected by the spell of an African witch doctor. The legendary Captain Nemo is played by Naseeruddin Shah in full Indian regalia and the most amazing version of the Nautilus I've ever seen, and a totally cool car to match! Peta Wilson colors her blond tresses dark as Mina Harker, the survivor of the "Dracula Incident" is a tough, unflappable vampiress. I'll never forget how delighted I was to see Tom Sawyer had grown up and joined the CIA! Rodney Skinner AKA The Invisible Man joins the troup with his useful skills, and of course the clever Dr. Jekyll brings along his angry inner self, Mr. Edward Hyde, who is simply a colossus. The invincible and immortal Dorian Gray is played by Stewart Townsend, (rawr!) though his magical portrait doesn't look nearly as good.

So what brought these interesting characters together to join forces? The Fantom, of course. He is a mysterious and clever madman bent on turning several rival countries against each other and starting a world war. So the mysterious "M" called upon these extraordinary beings to pitt their courage, strength, wit and various unusual talents to stop him.

I just love this movie, it's totally fun, it has great gadgets, fun characters, and some great lines too! You'll be on the edge of your seat! This was based on a graphic novel, and apparently there were many changes made, as often are for the film version. I haven't read the graphic novel yet, but it is on my wish list as I'm a fan of comics and comic art.


  1. EEEk, thank you for reminding me about this film, i still haven't seen it! i shall go and look on amazon right now, because its right up my street, i love steampunk! x ruthie

  2. Mmmm, Stuart Townsend as Dorian Grey. Just lovely ;) Do you know he was supposed to play Aragorn in LOTR? Apparently they filmed for a couple of months before Peter Jackson decided he was too young looking. On such things are careers made and broken. Anyway, that was just my useless fact for the day!


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