We went over to Seattle tonight, and saw The Secret of Kells.
It was easily the most beautiful movie I've seen this year -- stylized and mesmerising, a true visual feast. It's filled with visual symbolism: the diatom-like wisps of Brendan's imaginative power, the falling snowflakes that resemble Celtic knotwork, the cathedral-like quality of the forest, with a door only visible to those who are welcome within its bounds. The combined power of early Christian mysticism and ancient Irish paganism, including the beauty and danger of the faerie domains in the ancient forests, is striking and compelling.
And if you're a calligrapher, or if you just aspire to be one like me, the last few minutes will make you weep. Illuminators of the Middle Ages dedicated their entire lives to create masterpieces such as the Book of Kells, and the animators of this film seem to understand the nature of the sacrifices these men willingly made to create and to capture such beauty.
Go see it, and you will understand.