Parents' Guide to

Song of the Sea

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Beautiful Irish tale explores myths, sibling relationship.

Movie PG 2014 93 minutes
Song of the Sea Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 6+

Based on 47 parent reviews

age 3+

Stunning animation with great message

We stumbled upon this movie when our daughter was just 2, and it was hit with our whole family! The animation is stunning, the songs are beautiful, and it has a really great message. It’s a family favorite that we still watch regularly. At its core, this movie is about a family dealing with loss and the depression that can sometimes follow while emphasizing that emotions are good and important to process and feel. We took the opportunity to discuss that it is okay to have strong emotions with our daughter. There is one part that sensitive children might have a hard time with: when the dad yells very briefly at the son.

This title has:

Great messages
1 person found this helpful.
age 7+

A lovely story about grief and selkies

A touching hand-drawn animated film about the consumption of grief, parenting, how to handle our emotions and selkies. The singing, the pain of each character and the allegory that the film takes great pains to imagine for you are all in service for a lovely heartwarming, endearing and teary animated film. Beautiful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (47):
Kids say (37):

Director Tomm Moore clearly loves focusing on the myths and legends of his home country, and the results are simply gorgeous. Both The Secret of Kells and Song of the Sea beautifully depict what makes the Emerald Isle such a magical place. Selkies aren't as widely discussed as other mythical sea creatures (unlike mermaids, they're fully seals in the water), so this movie is an ideal way to introduce young kids to that legend, as well as the Macha (an ancient Irish goddess), and other aspect of Irish lore. And with its evocative, subdued palette, the hand-drawn animation is a refreshing change from the overly slick, computer-generated images that are so common in mainstream Hollywood family films.

But what really makes Song of the Sea such a winning and delightful film is its focus on the two siblings, the use of traditional music, and the stories within the story. Ben is the keeper of his mum's stories (all of which are true, we learn), and Saoirse is the keeper of the song that will set the fairy spirits free from their imprisonment. It may sound a bit complicated, but in the context of the movie, even young kids will understand what's going on and how the various stories interconnect. In the end, this is a lovely Irish film about a brother and sister, a girl who finds her voice, and the legacies parents leave behind for their children.

Movie Details

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