After 10-year-old Fiona's mother dies, her ailing father sends her to live with he grandparents in a small fishing village in Donegal, Ireland, hoping to preserve the sickly girl's health. There, she learns about how her grandparents were forced to leave the island of Roan Inish during the war — and that a local legend says that an ancestor of hers married a selkie, a seal who can turn into a human. Her baby brother washed out to sea in a cradle years ago, and some villages say he's still being raised by the seals.
Fiona's not sure what to believe until she spots a naked little boy on the island. Could the stories be true? With the help of her cousin, Eamon, she hopes to convince her grandparents to return to their generational home in hopes that the seals will return Jamie, and their family will be reuinted. Now remastered from the original negative, this is a magical tale of mystery, family, and the power of love.
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"What's remarkable about this film (which Sayles adapted from Rosalie Fry's novel Secret of the Ron Mor Skerry) is that it's not told as a cute fantasy for children, but as a straightforward, unsentimental story of a young girl's family history. That gives the film — which was beautifully photographed by master cinematographer Haskell Wexler — an understated charm that is completely absorbing in its atmosphere and subtle tone. There's magic as well, to be sure — you could almost swear that the seals and seagulls in the film took direction from Sayles as well as any human actor!" — Jeff Shannon, Amazon.com Reviews
|Recommended Age||8 and up|
|Actors||Jeni Courtney, Pat Slowey, Dave Duffy, Declan Hannigan, Mairéad Ní Ghallchóir|
|Running Time||102 minutes|
|Studio||Sony Pictures Home Entertainment|
|Release Date||Jul 25, 2000|