7.7/10
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The Secret of Kells (2009)

Not Rated | | Animation, Adventure, Family | 22 June 2016 (USA)
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ON DISC
A young boy in a remote medieval outpost under siege from barbarian raids is beckoned to adventure when a celebrated master illuminator arrives with an ancient book, brimming with secret wisdom and powers.

Directors:

Tomm Moore, Nora Twomey (co-director)

Writers:

Tomm Moore (original story), Fabrice Ziolkowski (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Evan McGuire Evan McGuire ... Brendan (voice)
Christen Mooney Christen Mooney ... Aisling (voice)
Brendan Gleeson ... Abbot Cellach (voice)
Mick Lally Mick Lally ... Aidan (voice)
Liam Hourican ... Brother Tang / Leonardo (voice) (as Liam Hourrican)
Paul Tylak ... Brother Assoua (voice) (as Paul Tylac)
Michael McGrath Michael McGrath ... Adult Brendan (voice)
Paul Young ... Brother Square (voice)
Nora Twomey ... Additional Voices and Walla (voice)
Alli McCann Alli McCann ... Additional Voices and Walla (voice)
Clair Funchion Clair Funchion ... Additional Voices and Walla (voice)
Conor O'Halloran Conor O'Halloran ... Additional Voices and Walla (voice) (as Conor O Halloran)
Gaelle Hersent Gaelle Hersent ... Additional Voices and Walla (voice)
Marie Thorhauge Marie Thorhauge ... Additional Voices and Walla (voice)
Sean Lennon ... Additional Voices and Walla (voice)
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Storyline

Young Brendan lives in a remote medieval outpost under siege from barbarian raids. But a new life of adventure beckons when a celebrated master illuminator arrives from the isle of Iona 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 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 barbarians closing in, will Brendan's determination and artistic vision illuminate the darkness and show that enlightenment is the best fortification against evil? Written by GKids

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

forest | ink | wall | monastery | barbarian | See All (74) »

Taglines:

Turn the darkness into light


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Language:

English | Irish

Release Date:

22 June 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Brendan and the Secret of Kells See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

€6,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

€121,619 (France), 15 February 2009, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$39,826, 7 March 2010, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$686,383, 18 July 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Aisling, the fairy girl, is named after a 17th-century genre of Irish poetry. Aisling is Irish for "dream vision." In an Aisling poem, the poet would describe receiving a vision of the spirit of Ireland, who appeared to him in the form of a beautiful young woman. The female spirit of Ireland would inspire the poet to write about his homeland, and serve as his guide in creating the poem (much as Aisling serves as Brendan's guide in the film). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Aisling: I have lived through many ages, through the eyes of salmon, deer, and wolf. I have seen the Northmen invading Ireland, destroying all in search of gold. I've seen suffering in the darkness. Yet I have seen beauty thrive in the most fragile of places. I have seen the book. The book that turned darkness into light.
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Crazy Credits

During the closing credits, Aidan is heard reciting part of the Irish poem "Pangur Ban." See more »

Connections

Featured in AniMat's Classic Reviews: The Secret of Kells (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Opening Brendan
Composed By Colm Ó'Snodaigh
© and (P) Kíla Music Records (2007)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
enchanting visuals
18 April 2010 | by otter68See all my reviews

In an age where it seems all animation is either expensive computer generated, a-list celebrity vehicles or anime, which seems like it's all drawn by one man, it's refreshing to see an throw back to a time when animation was hand drawn and more attention was paid to the use of color and intricacy of design than mimicing real life or creating 3D.

The characters in this movie at times take a back seat to the scenery. The scenery alternates between what seems to be illuminated water color to illuminated manuscript illustration. It is breathtaking to behold on the big screen.

My main complaint about this film is that it was too short! I wish more time had been spent in the forest scenes, which are the richest in detail and color. One can imagine how the scenes in the Irish forest and wilderness inspired the illustrators of the Book of Kells.

The story is not simply a child's tale, and there's no potty humor as is prevalent in many Pixar and Disney movies today, but children with vivid imaginations and who love to draw will love this as will their parents.


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