Part of Saturday Family Films.
Beautifully drawn and refreshingly calm, THE SECRET OF KELLS hearkens back to animation's golden age with an enchanting tale inspired by Irish mythology. Young Brendan lives in the Abbey of Kells, a remote medieval outpost, where he labors with the other monks to fortify the abbey walls against Viking raids. But a new life of adventure beckons when one day a celebrated master illuminator arrives from foreign lands, carrying an ancient—but unfinished—book, brimming with secret wisdom and powers. To help complete the magical book, Brendan has to overcome his deepest fears on a dangerous quest that takes him for the first time beyond the abbey's walls and into the enchanted forest where mythical creatures hide. It is here that he meets the fairy Aisling, a mysterious young wolf/girl, who helps him along the way. But with the Viking hordes closing in, will Brendan's artistic vision illuminate the darkness and show that enlightenment is the best fortification against barbarians? Co-directed by Tomm Moore and Nora Twomey (THE BREADWINNER, also playing this month). Age Recommendation: 8+
See also: THE BREADWINNER
“The story, however, is just the vehicle for Moore and co-director Nora Twomey’s exquisite visuals, which draw their inspiration from medieval etchings more than contemporary animation (although my wife pointed out that the sprite and the boy are dead ringers for Disney’s Kim Possible and Ron Stoppable). A cloud of loosed butterflies turns the screen into a giant kaleidoscope; the hero defies an angular, labyrinthine serpent with just his drawing ability; the imperiled good guys escape blood-red Viking shock troops in great billowing whorls of green ink.” —Jim Ridley, Nashville Scene (Apr 15, 2010)
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