Your site
June 18, 2018 1:30 am

6 Captivating Foreign Animated Movies You’ve Never Seen


Disney, Pixar and Dreamworks have loyal fanbases and blockbuster hits. But with this domestic success, people often miss foreign animated movies that are just as heartwarming, creative and beautiful. To broaden your movie collection, here are six European animated movies- each with universal themes but unique styles- worthy of your next movie night!


Secret of Kells (G, 2009, Irish)

A visually intriguing animated film introduces a magical storyline incorporating Irish culture and folklore. Brendan’s home in the Abbey of Kells, a remote medieval outpost, falls under attack from barbarians. But then, a master illuminator from distant lands brings an ancient, mysterious book full of unknown wisdom and powers. If this book is finished, it has the potential to bring light to darkness but requires Brendan to rival his greatest fears. By exploring forests and encountering wild creatures, he meets a fairy, Aisling, to assist his journey. The plot touches on the challenges for good to overcome evil, but the Academy Award nominated film breaks expectations.


Song of the Sea (PG, 2014, Irish)

Ben and his sister, Saoirse, live with their father on an island. While Ben somewhat blames Saoirse for their mother’s disappearance, the siblings begin to unlock family secrets when discovering Saoirse can turn into a seal. When their grandmother detects trouble, she insists they move to the city. In attempts to get home, Ben and Saoirse encounter great obstacles.


Ernest and Celestine (PG, 2012, French)

This animation reflects on the unlikely relationship between a mouse, Celestine, and a bear, Ernest. Despite growing up hearing stories of horrible bears, Celestine befriends Ernest after a near-fatal encounter. Together, the pair make a deal which only leads to more trouble: with the police and their clashing worlds. The two must defend themselves on trial and against societal practices in this comedic film.


Le magasin des suicides- The Suicide Shop (unrated, 2012, French)

In a miserable world that everyone wants out of, the Suicide Shop- managed by the Tuvache family- thrives. Here, the depressed citizens find the “ingredients to end their lives,” thus bringing great success to the family.  But, unfortunately, the Tuvache family’s newborn baby, Alan, is a bundle of joy. Alan’s playfulness brings contrast the community and disgust to his family. The movie, with themes inappropriate for children, shares a captivating plot and animation for adults.


The Illusionist (PG, 2012, French)

When a struggling Illusionist in Paris sees his audiences shrinking, he travels to the United Kingdom seeking popularity. But sadly, audiences still do not appreciate his magic until one show captivates Alice, a young girl. Overwhelmed by his talent and kindness, she truly believes he has magical powers. Feeling pressured to keep up with Alice’s admiration, the Illusionist has difficulty maintaining the facade.


Nocturna (G, 2007, Spanish)

Tim is afraid of the dark- much to the amusement of the fellow orphans. Nevertheless, only stars can cure his fear. So when Tim notices a star missing, he feels devastated but also compelled to find out why. The adventure leads Tim to mystical creatures and unknown places, but also great personal growth, to prevent Nocturna from being overthrown by “the darkness.”

Jacqueline Till

Dinner and a movie... and a blog post. Writing about the movies people can't stop talking about along with the movies people should be talking about.