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Criterion Collection: Red Balloon

Criterion Collection: Red Balloon

Director: Albert Lamorisse Cast: Pascal Lamorisse, Georges Sellier, Wladimir Popof

DVD (Full Frame)

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Most of French director Albert Lamorisse's films celebrate the miracle of flight, but few were as landmark as his 1956 short subject The Red Balloon. The story, told with a minimum of dialogue, concerns a little boy (played by the director's son Pascal) who comes across a helium-filled balloon. As he plays with his new acquisition, the boy discovers that the balloon seemingly has a mind of its own. The little red orb follows its new "master" all through the streets of Paris, then dogs the boy's trail into the schoolroom, which drives the teacher to comic distraction. Towards the end, it seems as though boy and balloon will be parted forever....but director Lamorisse has a delightful surprise in store for us. In an unusual move, The Red Balloon in its American TV premiere was introduced by Ronald Reagan as an episode of the CBS anthology G.E. Theater on April 2, 1961.

Product Details

Release Date: 04/29/2008
UPC: 0715515028820
Original Release: 1956
Rating: NR
Source: Criterion
Region Code: 1
Presentation: [Full Frame]
Time: 0:34:00
Sales rank: 2,389

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Red Balloon
1. Logos/Opening Credits [1:58]
2. Pascal in Paris [4:05]
3. A Walk in the Rain [3:46]
4. "Obey Me, And Be Good" [3:56]
5. School [4:29]
6. Flea Market [5:04]
7. Pascal Buys a Pastry [2:42]
8. The Chase [4:27]
9. All the Balloons in Paris [3:55]
10. Color Bars [:00]

Customer Reviews

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Red Balloon 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first saw this film on TV when I was eleven. This little boy found a big red balloon and carried along with him everywhere, regardless how others looked at him. I was a lonely kid when I was little, and I saw myself in this boy, when he carried his red balloon, it was like he was holding on to his dream and happiness. His stubborness comforted me, inspired me. I had been looking everywhere to buy this DVD, finally I found it at, but could only watch online. Until now, I'm able to own one. I am very very happy!
Guest More than 1 year ago
My favorite film as a child. This masterpiece of cinematic art is a must have, a wonderful inspiration. I highly recommend this movie, a wonderful children's classic.
FlorenceRH More than 1 year ago
I saw this movie in Elementary school. I am now an adult. Somehow this movie always comes to my mind. Unforgettable. Enjoyable. A classic.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was introduced to this as a third grader in book form.I thoroughly enjoyed it during story time. I encouraged my mother to buy the book for our home library. My family agreed it was exceptional.As an adult and a mom , I purchased it in VHS form for my family library. I am thrilled to see it now will be available in DVD! This is Wonderful! It is a must-see for any one who loves photography, film , Paris and the magic of childhood . It is fun to view over and over and over again!!
TVProfessor More than 1 year ago
This is a simple little movie with a minimum amount of dialog, yet it tells a story that can be interpreted in many ways. There are really two stars of this film, the boy and the balloon which is given a character through cunning use of editing and photography.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have loved this movie since I saw it in school. Since then, I have shown it myself in many classes. If taken just at face value, I can see where it could be disturbing. However, it is a metaphor for Christ's life, death and resurrection, and as such is a powerful tool for discussion with young people (or adults).
Norske-Bookworm More than 1 year ago
I showed this film to 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders back when we didn't have DVD's. The 5th graders, at that time, gave excellent feedback. Third and fourth graders also got meaning from this movie. My VCR tape got destroyed a several years ago. I am so glad to see that it is available.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great movie for kids and grown ups. It will require patience, but store is worth it. Its a tale of what friendship really is and the loyalty it can produce without a single word of utterance.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought this thing was so awful when I saw it as a child. The kids appears to be isolated and then he finds comfort in a balloon? I was incredibly disturbed by it as a child, if you have sensitive kids I would not recommend it.