Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Le Ballon rouge

1956, France, directed by Albert Lamorisse

My two-year-old son regularly asks us to switch on the TV in the evenings. Occasionally, we oblige and he sits still for all of three or four minutes in front of some children's programming and we switch the box off again. He's perfectly capable of devoting a significant amount of time to a single activity, but thus far TV is low on his priority list, and that's fine with me. Imagine my surprise, then, when he sat on my lap through the 35 minutes of Albert Lamorisse's beguiling film, entranced by balloons, dogs, buses, children, bakeries, staircases and all the rest. Perhaps without quite intending to do so, Lamorisse created one of those wonderful films that can be enjoyed equally by adults and children. On first viewing, the adventures of the little boy with the red balloon command the attention, but the film's documentary qualities, capturing so much of what has disappeared from Paris's streets, are ultimately just as captivating. Those adventures were surely among the inspirations for the Goscinny/Sempé Petit Nicolas tales, which began to appear a few years later.

No comments:


List of all movies

Most of the images here are either studio publicity stills or screen captures I've made myself; if I've taken your image without giving you credit, please let me know.

About Me

Boston, Massachusetts, United States