Song of the Sea (DVD: Rated PG, 94 minutes) © 2014
Summary: Saoirse, the last selkie, and her brother Ben go on a quest to save the world of magic.
Review: From the creators of The Secret of Kells, the animation in Song of the Sea is both effective and lovely. The movie is set in Ireland, and deals heavily with Gaelic mythology (Mac Lir, Macha the Owl Witch, etc.) that will be mostly unfamiliar to an American audience. Overall, the movie does an excellent job of introducing characters and their stories, making them approachable. So while there is certainly a deeper story to be had by familiarizing yourself with the folk tales mentioned, it is still highly enjoyable. As a parent, the ‘scenes of peril’ and ‘pipe smoking’ that earned the PG rating posed little challenge in watching the movie with my three and seven year old sons.
Read-a-likes: While it represents rougher animation and slower storytelling, fans here may be interested in the creator’s first movie, The Secret of Kells. Those interested in learning more about Irish mythology can check out A Treasury of Irish Folklore. Adults fascinated by the setting should give Corra Harrison’s Burren Mysteries a try.
Availability: This film is available at the Lake Bluff Public Library as a DVD.
Review by: Eric Bailey