Monday, March 18, 2013

Review: The Secret of Kells

Animated feature - running time 75 minutes

Story and directed by Tomm Moore

Kells is set during the dark eras of early Christianity during the eighth century. 

The main character, Brendan, is growing up in a remote abbey in Ireland. 

What we are treated to is a fictionalized version of the creation of the Book of Kells, which is a real book, depicting an illuminated manuscript of the bible which has since become an Irish national treasure.  

Brendan has heard of a great book, the Book of Iona.  Brought to the abbey by Aiden of Iona who is a legendary illuminator.

Brendan desperately wants to be an illuminator but finds working on the Book of Iona completely unsettling.  He finds that he must face his inner fears and the fear of the forest outside the wall.

Saying much more would really ruin some of the really well written and acted parts.   The animation is very stylized however you get so involved with the story that if it does bother, it won't for long.

I was totally overtaken by the story as much as the way it was being served to me.  At times simplistic and others, wildly adventurous and mysterious.  It seems like the  stylized animation itself was used as a tool.  If it was, it was damn effective. Plus I like a story that doesn't feel like it should tie up each and every loose end.  The ending I think you will find is very fulfilling.

The film is an easy 9 or 9.5  it is not perfect, but I would be pressed hard to describe an imperfection. I found the film on and I amd sure there are other  outlets.  It is WELL worth watching.

Wiki information on The Secret of Kells

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