the red balloon movie analysis critique

Essay by kd101High School, 11th gradeA, October 2014

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The Red Balloon (1956)

Cast: Pascal Lamorisse

Le Ballon rouge

Director: Albert Lamorisse

Screenwriter: Albert Lamorisse

Country of Origin: France

The Red Balloon is a French movie directed, written, and produced by Albert Lamorisse. It tells the story of a young boy, portrayed by Albert Lamorisse's son, Pascal, who finds a red balloon that seems to have a mind of its own. The story takes place in Paris, France, and has won numerous awards, including the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. The balloon follows Pascal like a stray dog throughout the city while adults and jealous kids stare longingly. A group of bullies crowd around Pascal and the balloon, and destroy the balloon with slingshots. The 34 minute film ends with a large group of balloons arriving for Pascal to take a hot air balloon ride.

In the movie, the motif of balloons represents the longing of youth.

When the balloon is with Pascal, his imagination runs wild and he is extremely joyful. After the bullies pop the balloon, Pascal becomes sad but not for long, as he is "rescued" by a herd of colorful balloons. The balloons can show an escape from mundane reality, as well as a way to transcend from daily life.

Since the movie had no dialogue, sound and cinematography played a major role in the artistic development of this movie. Most of the sound in this movie was non-diegetic, because Pascal would not actually hear this background music. This makes the viewer see Pascal as whimsical and carefree because the music tunes out all of the hustle-and-bustle sounds of the city. The music also helps narrate the story by changing from a fast beat to a slow beat. A prime example of this would be when the viewer realizes that the balloon has...