In Paris, Chinese cinema student Song Fang is hired to work as the nanny of Simon by his divorced mother Suzanne, who works voicing marionettes in a theater. Suzanne is having troubles with her tenant Marc, who does not pay the rent, while she waits for the return of her older daughter Louise, who lives with her father in Brussels. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
A Quiet,Loving Meditation On Life (and sometimes art)
Note:anyone who fancies the cinematic overkill bombast of Jerry Bruckheimer,Michael Bay,Roland Emerich,etc.....PLEASE STAY AWAY FROM THIS FILM! That said,'Flight Of The Red Balloon' is a beautiful little film on the human condition. It comments on the Eurocentric lifestyle, as viewed through the Asian perspective. The story concerns a single mother,played to perfection by Juliette Binoche (always welcome on screen,as I've been an ardent fan of her work since 'The Unbearable Lightness Of Being')trying to raise her young son (Simon Iteanu),with an older daughter away at school, all without her absent husband. Also in the mix is an attractive young film student from Taiwan (played by Song Fang)who has been hired as Simon's Au pair,who fits in nicely among the others. Taiwan director Hou Hsiao Hsien (Flowers Of Shanghai, Three Times)has crafted a film that is mesmerizing to look at. Despite the rather hum drum goings on that transpire that in the hands of another director would be unwatchable, Hsien manages to make every day events seem dreamy. The film is a homage (of sorts)to Albert Lamorisse's now legendary film short,'The Red Balloon',in which the balloon acts as companion to a lonely French boy. The balloon,in this case acts as a narrative device,bringing the individual elements together (the humans)for nearly two hours that you can't tear your gaze from.
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