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The Rare World War II Japanese Feature Length Animated Film ''Momotaro: Umi no Shinpei'' (''Momotaro's Gods-Blessed Sea Warriors'' or ''Momotaro's Sacred Sailors'') Celebrating The Overthrow Of Colonial Power In Asia & The Pacific In All Regions DVD Format!
Produced in 1942 both to explain why Japan's military had swept though the South Pacific and to inspire the youth of the country to arms, this film follows the life of Japanese youngsters through their school days to their employment on the world's battefields. Nearly all the characters are animals, and when these Japanese warrior animal youths deploy throughout the Pacific, indigenous animals enthusastically assist them while they learn of the liberation to found in the service of the Greater Japanese Co-Prosperity Sphere. Ethnic charictures of caucasians abound, sometimes inspired by German depictions of Jews, while the continental United States gets mentioned as next on Japan's list of conquests. Of particular historical interest is the comical rendering of British General Percival's surrender of Singapore to General Yamashita, as well as an account of the 1619 fall of Jakarata to the Dutch told in terms to justify the expulsion of the Dutch from Indonesia by the Japanese. Perhaps its greatest value as a historical document however is its psychological insight into a particular difference between Japanese and Allied fighting men - while the jungle may have been unfamiliar and filled with awe and fear for Allied soldiers fighting in one, for Japanese soldiers it was a friendly and hospitable environment that they were quite comfortable in. This film in no small measure documents this sense of self assurance, and it stands as an example of exactly how this psychological comfort was propagandized into the psyche of the nation. (1942, Black & White, 1:13).
NOTE: Due to the age and condition of the source media, the picture quality sometimes falls below regularly accepted standards. It should nevertheless not detract from a satisfying viewing experience.
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