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The Secret of Kells

Little Brendan has spent all his life within the imposing walls of the Abbey of Kells. While his uncle Abbot Cellach once made illuminated manuscripts of faith, he has become consumed with the approaching threat of the vicious Vikings from the North. Escaping from them is Brother Aiden, a sage and a master illuminator. While the Abbot’s sole concern is the physical defense of Kells, Brother Aiden’s work is in the world of imagination. He is creating the most sacred, magical book in all of Ireland.The arrival of Brother Aiden reveals a new and marvelous reality to Brendan. In the company of the cat Panga he ventures into the mysterious world outside the Abbey’s walls, connecting with Aisling, a powerful spirit creature of the woods. Still, the Vikings are not the only dark threat he’ll need to face—both courage and imagination are needed if the book is to be saved. [Synopsis courtesy of Santa Barbara Independent]

Song of the Sea

Ben and Saoirse live in a lighthouse by the sea with their father, who remains distraught over the loss of his wife several years earlier. Though Ben is aware of the responsibility that comes with being a big brother, he is easily frustrated with Saoirse, who, at six years old, has yet to utter a single word. When Saoirse discovers a shell flute that used to belong to their mother, the spellbinding music she creates becomes both a means of communication and the key to a magical secret locked deep in their mother’s past. After they are sent to live with their granny in the city, Saoirse and Ben must work together to find their way home. Ben soon realizes that his sister holds the power to bring the ancient stories their mother told them to life — but in order to keep these tales alive, she needs to find her voice, and he needs to overcome his deepest fears. [Synopsis courtesy of Toronto International Film Festival]