YMMV / The Secret of Kells

  • Animation Age Ghetto: Somewhat. It's recommended ages 5 to 7 on Netflix, despite the whole "vikings attacking and murdering an entire village" thing.
  • Anticlimax Boss: Crom Cruach. Despite being an ancient Celtic god who destroyed Aisling's entire family (and possibly species), it gets about a minute of screen time and is promptly defeated by a piece of chalk.
  • Awesome Art: The entire film is full of beautiful art that at first seems simplistic, but actually has a lot of details when you look closely... much like the art in the Book of Kells itself.
  • Awesome Music: The entire soundtrack is great, courtesy of composer Bruno Coulais and Irish band Kila, but Aisling's Song is particularly noteworthy and regarded by some as the film's high point.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Despite getting less screen time than Brendan and Aidan, Aisling is by far the most popular character in the film, even finding her way into Empire's list of 50 best animated movie characters. Compare the original theatrical poster to the post-Oscar one. She also had the honour of going to the Oscars in 2010 when the film was nominated for Best Animated Feature. Word of God says here that Tomm Moore's thinking of doing a short film on Aisling or Pangur Ban, but he's hesitant about it because of people's head-canons.
  • It's Short, so It Sucks: Perhaps the most common complaint with the film. The movie features a rich story and world with monks, a wall, a sacred book, fairies, Vikings, and an Eldritch Abomination, but packs all of it into 75 minutes of screen time.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Abbot Cellach post-attack.
  • Mondegreen: What Brendan prays on the stone in the forest. The subtitles say "Oh no, it's hard enough," one can hear it as "I know eternal love," and the DVD Commentary mentions that it's a prayer in Irish, which doesn't make sense with the English subtitles...
    • It's the opening line of the Lord's Prayer in Irish: "Ár nAthair atá ar neamh...". The subtitles on the UK DVD just say [Prays in Irish].
  • Shown Their Work: Played with. The first ink Brendan is sent out to gather materials from is based on a real medieval recipe for gall ink; the "berries" are actually used cocoons for a type of wasp. But the resulting ink is actually black.
    • Aisling is shown to be frightened of the monastery's cross in the courtyard and is unable to enter the tower where Brendan is. Fitting, since she's a fairy and her people are slowly being pushed out and forgotten as Christianity spreads across Ireland. Fairies in Irish folklore were also unable to enter buildings unless specifically invited, thus the use of Pangur Ban to free Brendan from the basement.
      • And, as mentioned above, the lavish detail the animators paid to the Book of Kells is gorgeous, and looks like it could easily be an excerpt from one of the pages.
  • Vanilla Protagonist: Brendan, not much to him except that he's nice and brave.