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The Secret of NIMH (1982)

To save her ill son, a field mouse must seek the aid of a colony of rats, with whom she has a deeper link than she ever suspected.

Director:

Don Bluth

Writers:

Robert C. O'Brien (novel), Don Bluth (story adaptation) | 3 more credits »
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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Derek Jacobi ... Nicodemus (voice)
Elizabeth Hartman ... Mrs. Brisby (voice)
Arthur Malet ... Mr. Ages (voice)
Dom DeLuise ... Jeremy (voice)
Hermione Baddeley ... Auntie Shrew (voice)
Shannen Doherty ... Teresa (voice)
Wil Wheaton ... Martin (voice)
Jodi Hicks Jodi Hicks ... Cynthia (voice)
Ian Fried Ian Fried ... Timothy (voice)
John Carradine ... Great Owl (voice)
Peter Strauss ... Justin (voice)
Paul Shenar ... Jenner (voice)
Tom Hatten ... Farmer Fitzgibbons (voice)
Lucille Bliss ... Mrs. Fitzgibbons (voice)
Aldo Ray ... Sullivan (voice)
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Storyline

Mrs. Brisby, a widowed mouse, lives in a cinder block with her children on the Fitzgibbon farm. She is preparing to move her family out of the field they live in as plowing time approaches, however her son Timothy has fallen ill, and moving him could prove fatal. Mrs. Brisby visits The Great Owl, a wise creature who advises her to visit a mysterious group of rats who live beneath a rose bush on the farm. Upon visiting the rats, Brisby meets Nicodemus, the wise and mystical leader of the rats, and Justin, a friendly rat who immediately becomes attached to Mrs. Brisby. While there, she learns that her late husband, Mr. Jonathon Brisby, along with the rats, was a part of a series of experiments at a place known only as N.I.M.H. (revealed earlier in the story as the National Institute of Mental Health). The experiments performed on the mice and rats there boosted their intelligence, allowing them to read without being taught and to understand things such as complex mechanics and ... Written by MIss Victoria

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Animation in the grand tradition by a new master, Don Bluth. See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 July 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mrs. Brisby and the Rats of NIMH See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$386,530, 5 July 1982, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$14,665,733, 31 December 1982
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shannen Doherty recorded all her lines wearing a bow similar to her character's in the movie. See more »

Goofs

After Teresa is done bandaging Mrs. Brisby's hands, she places the ball of gauze to her side. On the next shot the ball is gone. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Nicodemus: Johnathan Brisby was killed today while helping with the plan. It is four years since our departure from NIMH, and our world is changing. We cannot stay here much longer. Johnathan was a dear friend. I am lost in knowing how to help his widow. She knows nothing about us or the plan. Perhaps best that I do nothing at present. I shall miss him. Johnathan - wherever you are - your thoughts must comfort her tonight. She will be waiting and you will not return. Farewell... my friend.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The production storyboards are used for background in the end credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

On the MGM KIDS DVD release of the film, the 1982 United Artists logo is replaced with the 1995 United Artists logo. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Robot Chicken: Victoria's Secret of NIMH (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Flying Dreams
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith
Lyrics Written and Performed by Paul Williams
Arranged by Ian Fraser
Lullaby Performed by Sally Stevens
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
beautiful animation within a beautiful story
30 August 1999 | by PeachHamBeachSee all my reviews

I turned on Nickelodeon the other day and was disgusted with "Secret of NIMH 2: Timmy to the Rescue". Among the many things was the pee-poor animation. So it's not even worth mentioning.

The original "The Secret of NIMH" remains to this day, my favorite animated feature. Animation-wise, it outshines even Disney's finest features of old: Bambi and Snow White; and of new: Mulan and Beauty and the Beast, all of which are favorites of mine. If the story of Mrs. Brisby, a widowed fieldmouse with four children to rear alone and the heroism she displays throughout the movie isn't enough to touch certain people, they should watch it if only to marvel at the miraculous use of color and dexterity. My favorite scene is when the farm cat is chasing Mrs. Brisby and they end up falling into the water beneath a windmill. But the whole movie has a kind of visual "theme" of glowing, sparkling mysticism, which fits into the storyline of power, beauty, courage, the abuse of power, and good and evil. It was rated G, but I feel that because of the amount of violence and animated bloodshed, and because of a very frightening scene involving a sinkhole, it should have been rated PG. That means it's not a kiddie kind of cartoon!!!


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