Title: Riverdance: The Animated Adventure
Released: 2022

Fix: Animation, Irish Culture, Dancing, Talking Animals, Grief
Platform: Netflix

Netflix Summary:

After a heartfelt loss, Irish-born Keegan and his Spanish-born friend Moya learn to dance through danger and despair with a magical herd of spirit deer.

FYA Summary:

In a small seaside town in Ireland, the lighthouse not only helps passing ships to navigate, but also protects the town’s guardian spirits and wards off a supernatural evil … at least that’s the story Keegan’s grandfather told him. When the old man dies, Keegan is too heartbroken to believe in ancient myths. But what if this myth is real?

Familiar Voices:

Pierce Brosnan as Granddad/Patrick

The former James Bond plays a double role as Keegan’s Granddad and Patrick, king of the spirit deer. He is warm, wise and witty and can shift easily along with this movie’s swings between comic and serious.

Sam Hardy as Keegan

This young actor has a lot of emotional weight to carry as the film’s protagonist, but he carries it well. His grief, anger and confusion feel real enough that I could understand the questionable choices he makes at first, and truly hope for his redemption.

Hannah Herman Cortes as Moya

This young Spanish actress makes her English-language debut in this film, and does it with charm, empathy, and an almost otherworldly singing voice. The growing friendship between Moya and Keegan is one of the sweetest parts of the story.

Aisling Bea as Margot

British Comedy Award winner Aisling Bea steals every scene she’s in as Margot, the world’s most awkward music store manager. Her attempts to cheer up Keegan after the funeral would be enough reason to watch this movie by itself.

Brendan Gleeson as the Huntsman

Brendan Gleeson, who most recently appeared in The Banshees of Inisferin, brings a quiet matter-of-factness to the role of the spirit deer’s enemy that is more menacing than a scream.

Couch-Sharing Capability: Bring Tissues

Don’t watch this with anyone who makes sarcastic comments at inconvenient times, because some of the characters already do that. Also don’t watch this with someone who will make fun of you when you cry at the sight of a dancing deer. (If you’ve seen it, you know what I mean.) But do watch it with someone who can laugh at fluffy sheep being blown around like dandelion seeds, frog parents conducting their tadpoles’ swimming formation, and – I know I’ve said it before – dancing deer.

Recommended Level of Inebriation: Green Beer/Tea

I’m not Irish and I don’t drink, so I wouldn’t know how much is too much, but I’d say you can enjoy this at any level. Personally, I was giggling and tearing up on the strength of a cup of tea.

Use of Your Streaming Subscription: Good

The animation in this film is beautiful, from the green Irish landscapes to the perfectly precise dance sequences. The music, mostly taken from Bill Whelan’s original soundtrack for the stage show that inspired this film, will make you bounce in your seat. The plot is silly, but it knows it, and the emotional heart of the story feels very real.

If you’re looking for something to watch with your family on Saint Patrick’s Day – because why should Christmas get all the good holiday movies? – look no further than this.

Regina Peters works in the video game industry, but her favourite imaginary worlds are on paper. She lives in Montreal, Canada, with her family.