Fri 7th Nov
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 Gkidz)
This matinee is an ideal introduction to high quality Irish animation and storytelling. Parents and teachers need to know that this Oscar-nominated animated movie is too intense for preschoolers and even young primary school-aged kids. Steeped in Irish folklore, the movie includes scenes of Barbarian invaders sweeping through towns, terrorizing and killing people with their swords and axes as they go. There are also some frightening images of red-eyed, snarling wolves and an evil pagan serpent god. Children old enough to handle the cartoon violence will learn about Irish legends, the tradition of illuminated manuscripts, and how every hero needs friends to succeed in his quest.
Although the characters, fantasy elements, and plot specifics of this movie are fictional, as many of you know, there is the real "Book of Kells"; an illuminated, heavily illustrated rendering of the Four Gospels of the Christian bible, that dates from the Early Medieval period 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 Seventeenth 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.
Cartoon Saloon, the creators of this Oscar nominated film have kindly offered to screen this matinee. They will also be hosting a workshop for any secondary/FE/HE students considering a career in animation. Cartoon Saloon will also be speaking in the evening on the main stage. Not to be missed.