1961 / Director. Andrew Steane.
Wow. Talk about a long forgotten classic. They Found A Cave is a 1961 Australian adventure film about 5 orphaned English children who move to rural Tasmania to live with their aunt on a farm. When she becomes ill they are left in the care of a crooked, malicious house-maid who plans to rob the aunt and run off with her money. To escape her vicious care the kids run off into the Aussie bush where they find a cave and make it their new home. Sneaking back to the farmhouse to pinch supplies they have a fantastic time in their rocky hideaway where they paint themselves with charcoal to look like aboriginals (I know) and get up to all kinds of mischief. It is a curious film... sort of an oddity really. The contrast of prim & proper British accents against ocker country-bumpkin Aussie ones is somehow unsettling. LOL ... but the movie is cheeky, innocent and good natured. I'm sure children of the 60s would have lapped it up. It has the quality of the late 50s Disney features and the colourisation is lovely. Sadly the film has been lost to obscurity. Few people know of it and it's yet to receive a re-release on DVD. There isn't a lot of information on it but according to Wikipedia a 50th anniversary documentary was in the works, which was to also showcase other Aussie classics like Bungala Boys and Bush Christmas... I don't think it ever came to fruition. I'd like to see it.