Film Review: The Secret of Kells (2009)

Fig 1. Poster 

The Secret of Kells (2009) is a French/ Belgian/ Irish animated fantasy film. It was directed by Tomm More, who is an Irish film maker, animator and illustrator, and Nora Twomey who is also an Irish film maker and animator. This Irish animation is based around the Book of Kells, a book containing the four gospels of the New Testament.

The story follows Brendan as he lives within the Abbey of the Kells, which is run by his uncle, Abbot Cellach,. As the film continues, Brother Aidan, a master Illuminator arrives at the Abbey with the book of Kells and begins to tell Brendan the many stories that surround the book. As Brendan become more interested with the book he become closer with Brother Aidan and goes outside the walls of the Abbey for ingredients for the book, while the Viking threat is getting closer.

Fig 2.
The whole film looks like its been lifted from a book, with its detailed art style and Irish heritage throughout. as well as serving to limitations that keep the picture flat, which is very dynamic. This keeps things distinct and unique to the property it is based on.
The film is constant with earthy colours of greens and browns and resembles nature this is a continuing theme in the story. Until the Vikings attack, the film shits into whites and black with shades of red, this all represents danger and also death to them. This makes a huge contrast in film compared to its natural colours shown before.

Fig 3
The film tells the origin story of the Book of Kells, showing ture Irish culture, religion, and Celtic mythology. Although it was not a success in the box office it was a huge success in terms of art style and story, and could be concidered a hidden gem . 

Illustration List

Figure 1.

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