From an unassuming warehouse, a classic is discovered.
Films in every form have this uncanny ability to help us understand where a culture is at the time of their creation. So when a lost film is unexpectedly tracked down, we get more than just a bit of nostalgic fun -- we get a kind of snapshot of the times as well.
Mogura no Aventure (Mole's Adventure) is an animated short from 1958. It is, in fact, the first animated movie ever to air on Japanese TV. At 8 minutes, 53 seconds, the animation (done all with paper cutouts) tells the story of Kuro-Chan, a mole who is blasting off to space for the adventure of his life.
The quality is, apparently, very good for something not seen since the late '50s. What really sets this piece apart, though, is the fact that it's in color, something that would not become a standard in Japan until the '60s. So really, even if you lived in Japan at the time and saw this animation, you probably saw it in black and white, which makes the find all the more historic.
Mogura no Adventure is a nifty little slice of Japanese history. It'll be screened in July, but we're hopeful it'll find its way overseas on a disc or even just streaming online.
(via Bleeding Cool)