Song Of The Sea (2014)
Critic Consensus: Song of the Sea boasts narrative depth commensurate with its visual beauty, adding up to an animated saga overflowing with family-friendly riches.
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Critic Reviews for Song Of The Sea
"Song of the Sea" creates a magical world, one that pulls you in and leaves you, when it's over, feeling changed by the journey.
Moore manages this life-affirming touch without being preachy and by simply melding unusual old folktales into a new story filled with visually stunning images sure to captivate children of all ages.
Irish director Tomm Moore's animated beauty Song of the Sea tells the sort of story that makes you crave the flickering of firelight or wish for the warmth of a blanket pulled up to your chin while mom or dad reads a bedtime tale.
Irish animator Tomm Moore follows his celebrated feature debut, The Secret of Kells, with another ravishing fantasy based on Irish folklore.
A film about terrible things that ensue when overprotective love separates a child from her heritage and represses the natural expression of grief.
Audience Reviews for Song Of The Sea
The film's gorgeous visuals are the only thing that justifies the Oscar nomination it got, since plot-wise this is a rather weak (and bland) animation that can't escape the fact that too much is poorly elaborated and explained, like the girl unable to speak and her sudden illness.
After receiving an Oscar nomination for his exquisitely animated film The Secret of Kells in 2009, director Tomm Moore achieved the same again with his unique style of animation for his follow-up, Song of the Sea. In the first instance, he lost the Oscar to Disney's Up and the second time around Disney prevailed again with Big Hero 6. However, it's still good to see Moore's films challenge such big hitters. After the death of their mother, Ben and his little sister Saoirse are sent to live with their grandmother as their father is still in grieving. They take it upon themselves to find their own way back home by embarking on a fantastical journey across the sea where they are tasked with freeing faeries and saving the spirit world while discovering the magic and ancient legend of the Selkies - mythical seals who can change into human form when on land. As he did in The Secret of Kells, Moore again focuses on Irish folklore and imbues the whole tale with the same ethereal beauty that he employed so stunningly in his debut. His traditional, hand-drawn animation is a joy to behold and so refreshing in an age of overproduced, computer generated material. Despite having made only two films (and a forthcoming contribution to a segment of Khalil Gibran's The Prophet), Moore has been mentioned in a similar light to the great Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki in his ability to create his own magical and enchanting stories. Personally speaking, I think the comparison to Miyazaki is far too premature but Moore is certainly an undoubted talent, regardless. His worlds and imagination can, at times, be breathtaking and Song of the Sea is a wonderful piece of storytelling. Like The Secret of Kells, however, he has slight pacing issues and younger viewers may find their concentration tested. That being said, he's refined a lot the faults that befell that film. His story is stronger and more involving and his decision to stick with composer Bruno Coulais and Irish folk band Kila results in a perfectly fitting score that captures and compliments the essence of Celtic mythology. A rich and beautifully crafted rights-of-passage fable where the story and imagery interweave with near perfection. Thoroughly deserving of it's Oscar nomination last year and very unlucky to lose out to Big Hero 6. The Academy are well known for making wrong decisions but it's hugely disappointing that they'd overlook this in favour of something that just happened to make more money. This is a genuine gem of animation. Mark Walker
There is absolutely no excuse as to how this movie or Kaguya lost the Oscar. No excuse.
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