Animation / The Mystery of the Third Planet

A 1981 film (Тайна третьей планеты in Russian), produced by the famous Soyuzmultfilm studio in Moscow and based on the Alice, Girl from the Future books by Kir Bulychev. Stars the voice of Olga Gromova, the first person ever to play Alisa.

In it, Alisa and her father Professor Selesnyov and his friend the Captain travel all over space in the 22nd century, searching for rare animals to bring back to their planet. Through their intergalactic travels they pick up increasingly bizarre creatures and eventually become tangled into a criminal conspiracy involving a bird. That's about all there is to get plotwise— most of the time's focused on the surreal, psychedelic Peter Max-inspired world.

Two English versions were released; one oddly enough with Kirsten Dunst as the voice of Alisa, and the other released as Baryshnikov's collection of "favorite stories". Also there is an English fansub on YouTube. Two NES games were released.

Tropes related to the film:

  • Bizarre Alien Biology: A crayon box of colors, purple cows with wings, anything you could dream up.
  • The Captain: Captains Kim and Buran. Zelyony would be as well, hadn't he been such an Eeyore.
    • Poloskov in the original (Zelyony was an engineer), who is also a significant character in a larger Bulychev milieu.
  • Don't Call Me "Sir": Selesnyov much prefers to be called "Professor" rather than "Captain", because he isn't. He's the head of the expedition and calls the shots, but he doesn't command their ship.
  • The Eeyore: Captain Zelyony, who has since became a quintessential pessimist in Russian SF.
  • Mistook the Dominant Lifeform: Happens to Professor Selesnyov on an interstellar market. He approaches a humanoid alien to ask him how much the bird he is asking costs... only for the bird to state that she is the one selling him.
  • Pint-Sized Kid: Alisa. Either she's too short for her 8, or both Zelyony and Professor are as tall as NBA players.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: The cartoon takes a great liberty with the original novel, but that's to be expected — Soviet animation was never intended to make feature films and even miniseries were a rarity, so they had to heavily compress the original material.