If Aliens Made Documentaries, They Might Look Like This Oscar-Nominated Short Film from 1967

If Aliens Made Documentaries, They Might Look Like This Oscar-Nominated Short Film from 1967

Feb 07, 2014

 

If other life forms exist, they’re probably wondering what the hell is wrong with us. Les Drew and Kaj Pindal poked fun at this notion when they directed a 1967 Academy Award-nominated film, What on Earth?, that takes a humorous look at Earth’s inhabitants from the fictional view of the Martians.

Cars are mistaken for living beings and appear to be Earth’s dominant species. The automotive world is depicted in colorful, animated form set to a jazzy soundtrack. A never-ending parade of vehicles, highways, mountains and movement tell us what the Martians make of our planet. The short comes from the National Film Board of Canada, and after a run in theaters it became a television favorite.

It’s nice to see an early cartoon with so much snark, poking fun at people and the documentary-style exposés that were popular at the time. The animation work itself is nothing outstanding, but the fast pace, sonic textures, and colors make it fun to watch. See what the Martians make of Earth and auto culture in this 10-minute clip.


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