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The Red Balloon (1956)

Le ballon rouge (original title)
Approved | | Short, Comedy, Drama | 11 March 1957 (USA)
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1:19 | Trailer

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A red balloon with a life of its own follows a little boy around the streets of Paris.

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Pascal - le petit garçon
Georges Sellier ...
Le marchand
Vladimir Popov ...
Un locataire
Paul Perey
Sabine Lamorisse ...
La petite fille au ballon bleu
Michel Pezin
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Renée Marion ...
La mère de Pascal
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Storyline

A boy makes friends with a seemingly sentient balloon, and it begins to follow him. It follows the boy to school, to the bus, and to church. Boy and balloon play together in the streets of Paris and try to elude a gang of boys that wants to destroy the balloon. Written by alfiehitchie

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Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

11 March 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Red Balloon  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay, even though it has little dialogue. See more »

Goofs

For a brief instant, a wire can be seen attached to balloon as boy waits to cross street. Wire stands out against blue coat of man standing behind him looking on as the boy waits for intersection to clear. See more »

Quotes

Pascal - le petit garçon: Could you hold my balloon while I'm in school?
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Crazy Credits

With the cooperation of the balloons of the Paris area. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Glee: Makeover (2012) See more »

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User Reviews

 
we were shown this film in school, but did you fear the emotions?
29 August 2005 | by (san francisco bay area) – See all my reviews

Wow, I thought of this film recently and remember it fondly. So, I looked it up on IMDb, hoping that this hadn't been a dream, and that it really existed. I wish I could see this film again today.

A little boy is chosen by a red balloon, which colours his otherwise dreary, grey days. I was shown this film in class in kindergarten (late '70s) and again in grade school, I believe. When I first saw it, it was with a rather existential, perhaps detached, view of it. Not much reaction, really. I didn't quite know what to make of it. Fortunately, I didn't rely on a little gang of pals to tell me what to think about it. I had never seen anything like it. It struck me that it was foreign. I liked that about it. The foreignness intrigued me, also the fact that it was old. It always impressed me how kids wore little grown-up shoes in '50s Europe. The quietness of the little boy, Pascal, also had a profound impact on me. I never understood the need for us kids in the U.S. to constantly yak about endless bull**** in order to feel secure. We never enjoy the silence. This carries on into adulthood. There's meaningless small talk, endless jibber jabber, all in an effort to hide, behind voluminous verbiage, our true sensitive selves from the big bad world. There's an existentialist problem for you. If there are any xenophobic misgivings against "the French," it's because they've long faced the human condition in a way that we as "Americans" are far too infantile as a culture to do; and, at this point, far too stunted with cultural arrested development to ever hope to do so.

I suppose the cruel little boys in the film symbolised the barbaric/insensitive "American" sensibility which I had grown used to. And the story the film conveys through such brilliant, yet simple, symbolism illumines such a range of themes—from xenophobia, alienation, solitude and introspection to friendship, loyalty and sacrifice. Simply brilliant. This film probably taught me more than a handful of my first years of schooling combined. By the time I saw this film the second time my eyes were filled with wonder and, toward the end of the film, welled over with tears.


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Am I the only one who thought this movie was good? kellyleighcrutcher
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LaserDisc version of The Red Balloon is terrific. dale-247
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