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 & 6 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 (77) »

Taglines:

Turn the darkness into light


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although the characters, fantasy elements, and plot specifics of this movie are fictional, there is a real Book of Kells, an illuminated, heavily illustrated rendering of the Four Gospels of the Christian Bible, that dates from the Early Medieval period (probably the early Eighth Century) in Ireland. The best historical and archaeological evidence suggests that, starting shortly after it was finished, the book was moved several times (including, as depicted in the movie, during an Viking invasion) and lost for various periods. It has been housed at the library of Trinity College, Dublin, since the 17th century, and is considered perhaps the single most valuable cultural artifact of Irish history that has ever been discovered. Some of the design concepts for the movie echo aspects of the original Book of Kells; for instance, the shapes of the repeated tree patterns as Brendan enters the forest are quite similar to the arrangement and shapes of the columns and arches in the "Eusebian Canons, Folio 5R" page of the real book. 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

Referenced in Wolfwalkers (2020) See more »

Soundtracks

Opening Brendan
Composed By Colm Ó'Snodaigh
© and (P) Kíla Music Records (2007)
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User Reviews

 
Beautiful, rich film!
25 February 2010 | by llamswerdnaSee all my reviews

The Secret of Kells is one of the most unique, beautiful, and eye- popping animated films I have ever seen. Before watching this film, I was convinced that nothing could give Up a run for its money and that it was a shoo-in to win in this category, but I found in Kells a serious contender.

The Secret of Kells tell the story of a young orphan named Brendan, who lives with his uncle, the Abbot of Kell. The Abbot is a loving guardian, but perhaps a bit too strict and much more concerned with fortifying the wall around the town from a coming attack by vikings than he is at nurturing the boy's imagination. When the legendary Brother Aidan (who looks surprisingly like Willie Nelson) shows up and takes the boy under his wing, Brendan goes on a journey into the woods and meets a lovely forest nymph named Aisling who takes a liking to him (and saves his life more than once). With Aisling's help, he attempts to save the town and help Brother Aidan complete the mystical book which—legend has it—can turn dark into light.

See my full review of The Secret of Kells at: http://theoscarsblog.blogspot.com/2010/02/movie-review-secret-of- kells.html


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

Ireland | Belgium | France | UK

Language:

English | Irish

Release Date:

22 June 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Secret of Kells See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$39,826, 7 March 2010

Gross USA:

$676,775

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,803,412
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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