Thu 13 March 2008, The Herald

The Flight of the Red Balloon

By Alison Rowat
The Flight of the Red Balloon (PG) *** Dir: Hou Hsiao-Hsien With: Juliette Binoche, Simon Iteanu, Fang Song As the title suggests, this Parisien drama takes its lead from Albert Lamorisse's Oscar-winning short of 1956. The balloon only makes the briefest of appearances before Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-Hsien switches his focus to the tale of a harassed mother (Juliette Binoche), her son, and the child's nanny. Not a lot happens: mum fights with the neighbours, child goes to school, and the nanny, who is also a film student, works on an assignment about, you've guessed it, a red balloon. Despite the lack of action, Hsien's film has a hypnotic pull, as if it is the viewer who is le ballon rouge, passing serenely through other people's lives.
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It was published by The Herald, which adheres to the PCC Code

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