Comet in Moominland (film)

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Comet in Moominland
Comet in Moominland (film).jpg
The cover of film's Japanese DVD release
Directed by Hiroshi Saitô
Produced by Kazuo Tabata
Written by Akira Miyazaki
Based on Kometjakten
by Tove Jansson
Starring Minami Takayama
Ryûsei Nakao
Rei Sakuma
Takehito Koyasu
Akio Ôtsuka
Ikuko Tani
Mika Kanai
Music by Sumio Shiratori
(Japanese version)
Pierre Kartner
(International version)
Edited by Seiji Morita
Telescreen Japan Inc.
Telecable Benelux B.V.
Release date
  • August 8, 1992 (1992-08-08) (Japan)
Running time
68 minutes
Country Japan
Language Japanese

Comet in Moominland (Japanese: ムーミン谷の彗星, Hepburn: Mūmindani no Suisei) is an anime film by Telecable Benelux B.V.. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Finnish illustrator and writer Tove Jansson, originally published in Swedish.[1] It was the first full-length Moomin film.[2] It was released in Japan first theatrically in August 8, 1992 as a triple-feature with two unrelated shorter films and later released on video with 10 minutes of extra footage.[1] It was never released for English, but has been dubbed to several European languages. It was the seventh most watched film in Finland in the season 1992/1993 with 166,738 viewers.[3]

As the original novel introduces many recurring characters who appear in later Moomin novels, the film similarly works as a prequel to the 1990 anime series Moomin. International version of the film features a new musical score composed by Pierre Kartner whereas the original, Japanese release of the film mainly recycles Sumio Shiratori's score from the anime series. Japanese version, however, has new opening and ending songs "Shiawase no morugaane" and "Kono uchuu he, tsutae tai", both sung by Emiko Shiratori.


The plot takes place before the events of the Moomin TV series. Before the events of the film, Moomin and his parents Moominpappa and Moominmamma had moved to Moominvalley and finished building Moomin House.

Moomin, Little My and Sniff go to the beach to find shells for Moomimamma to adorn her flowerbeds with, during which Sniff finds a cave. During the rainy evening, Moominmamma suggests Moomin give an sea pearl he found it to a girl he likes, but he doesn't believe such thing will happen. Suddenly, the Muskrat appears on the front door and asks for a place to stay because his riverbank home's been destroyed by Moominpappa's bridge, built earlier that day. Muskrat, a philosopher, tells he has smelled something strange recently and argues that the current rain is unnatural. The next day, it's turned everything black and according to Muskrat it is soot from outer space. To the entire people of the Moominvalley, he notes that the Final Judgment will fall upon them on. Later on the same day at the dinner table, he tells the Moomins about galaxies, their homeworld, and its fate. He believes that a threat is coming from space and nothing can be done.

Moominpappa gets the idea about the astronomical observatory in the Lonely Mountains, where a telescope can see far into space. The next morning, Moomin, Little My and Sniff leave the valley toward the Lonely mountains. On the way they meet Snufkin for the first time when he plays the harmonica in a tent close to the river. Snufkin has heard about a comet which could crush to earth at any time, and joins the group. On the way, he also tells of an crater that's filled with garnets, which Sniff visits, trying to get garnets for himself. However, a large monster-like lizard attacks him and while Sniff narrowly escapes, he loses the garnets he managed to collect. After that, they climb the steep mountains towards the observatory, while Moomin finds a golden anklet. Snufkin knows that the anklet belongs to the Snorkmaiden, who was probably also traveling to the observatory with her brother Snork who is interested about the comet.

Moomin and his friends arrive at the observatory, where they find out that the comet will be colliding in two days. On the way back to home, Moomin saves the Snorkmaiden from a giant carnivorous plant, and they immediately fall in love with each other. Both Snork Maiden and Snork join the group while they try to reach Moominvalley before the comet. On the way they cross the bottom of the sea, which has dried completely because of the heat of the closing comet. Sniff finds an old pocket knife near and old sunken ship and the others climb in to find more treasures. Snorkmaiden saves Moomin and Snufkin from a giant octopus inside the shipwreck. On the last day the group eventually reaches Moominvalley where all residents except Moomin's parents are fleeing because of the comet. After that Moomin and friends meet Hemulen who is a philatelist and unaware of the impending doom. A hurricane strikes them but they use the wind to their advantage by flying to the Moominhouse with Snufkin's tent. Hemulen loses his stamp collection in the hurricane but later regains it. Back home, Moominpappa and Moominmamma are waiting for their son, because it happens to be Moomin's birthday. After eating dinner they all decide to move to Sniff's cave for shelter and take the furnitures with them. Sniff is lost during the move when he sees a kitten and begins to follow it with a piece of cake. When there are only minutes left to the expected moment of the comet impact, Moomin and Snufkin find Sniff, who is paralysed from fear, and they carry him into the cave in the last minute. The comet almost crashes the earth, but suddenly changes its course and turns away.

Next morning, the sea returns and that cast celabrate on the beach, while Moomin gives Snorkmaiden the pearl.

Differences of the releases and from the novel[edit]

In Japan, it was shown with the short films: "Little Twins Whose Summer Flew" And: "Flower Witch Marie Belle: The Phoenix's Key", while in the rest of the countries it was shown in, it was its own separate movie, often seen as a series-wise finale. In international releases, was the majority of the score replaced by an new one by Pierre Kartner, since that majority was recycled from the series. Along with that, wrote and performed Kartner three new songs to replace the opening and ending ones from the Japanese version; the first one playing after the opening scenes, the sea exploration of Moomin and My and Sniff's simontainous discovery and implicit shared showing of the cave, the second one playing over Sniff's checking out and exploration of the crater, interruptely ended by Sniff's first sighting (albeit with glossing garnet eyes, due to illusion) of the monster, living in it and the last one playing over Moomin's pearl gifting and much of the credits; in many of these versions, loud seawaves are faded from the ending song, while it ends and in other versions, the song either is played in its entirety or, in the Polish version, plays the ending song of the series, after the movie's ending song ends.

As for from the novel, the differences are quite numerous:

- The first parts are heavily simplified; the going to the beach is simply an urgency in the movie, while in the novel, they end up there, after attempting to go to an dangerous place and the seashell searching is for Moominmama, rather than by their own volition. With that, that search is unified with Moomin and My, while Sniff searches shells, rather than the beach itself, like in the movie, and complains to Moomin about swimming, instead of searching them. Sniff's discovery of the cave is a simple finding, amazement (including of finding it on his own) and shout for sharing it to Moomin and My, which he does, off-screen, but discussed in the next scene.
- The hanging restbed is already hung up in the movie, while in the novel, it was being set up in the beginning.
- Muskrat simply knocks on the door, after his home gets destroyed, albeit that in the same way as the novel (his dialogue is even word for word), while in the novel, Papa only finds him, while the other are sleeping.
- The slapstick scene before Muskrat drinks with them is removed.
- Muskrat is no longer a book reader, the philosophy happens to be from his head.
- The foreshadowing of the Hattifnatts is distilled to an simple sighting of them sailing down the river, in the montage of them traversing to the Lonely Mountains.
- My, Moomin and Sniff go the trip mainly through walking and subsequently, the only boat use is to the mountains to the observatory itself.
- The first two Hemulens are taken out and only the one for the postcards are in the story, anymore.


Role Japanese voice actor Finnish voice actor Swedish voice actor Norwegian voice actor
Moomin Minami Takayama Rabbe Smedlund Sixten Lundberg Trond Brænne
Moominpappa Akio Ohtsuka Matti Ruohola Johan Simberg Ivar Nørve
Moominmamma Ikuko Tani Ulla Tapaninen Margit Lindeman Lise Fjeldstad
Little My Rei Sakuma Elina Salo Lilli Sukula-Lindblom Kristi Grundvig
Sniff Ryusei Nakao Jyrki Kovaleff Riko Eklundh Helge Reiss
Snufkin Takehito Koyasu Pertti Koivula Michel Budsko Magnus Nielsen
Snork Maiden Mika Kanai Misa Palander Ragni Grönblom Linn Stokke
Snork Yasuyuki Hirata Ilkka Merivaara Dick Idman Svein Tindberg
Hemulen Minoru Yada Tapio Hämäläinen Peik Stenberg Hallvard Lydvo
The Muskrat Masato Yamanouchi Markku Huhtamo Dick Idman Harald Mæle
The Mymble Yūko Kobayashi Leena Uotila Vivi-Ann Sjögren Hilde Grythe
Fillyjonk Sumi Shimamoto Leena Uotila Chris af Enehielm Kari-Ann Grønsund
Police Officer Takaya Hashi Tapio Hämäläinen Samuel Huber Rune Aldstedt


  1. ^ a b Jonathan Clements, Helen McCarthy. The anime encyclopedia. Stone Bridge Press, 2006. ISBN 9781933330105. 
  2. ^ Pentti Kejonen (April 6, 2011). "Muumipeikko ja pyrstötähti". Kaleva. 
  3. ^ Mitä missä milloin. Otava, 1995. p. 419. 

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