Albert Lamorisse

  • Albert Lamorisse – Le Ballon rouge AKA The Red Balloon (1956) (HD)

    1951-1960Albert LamorisseClassicsFantasyFrance

    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.Read More »

  • Albert Lamorisse – Crin blanc: Le cheval sauvage AKA White Mane (1953)

    1951-1960Albert LamorisseClassicsDramaFrance


    PopMatters Review :
    Renowned French filmmaker Albert Lamorisse is best known for his brilliant 1956 film, The Red Balloon, winner of both an Oscar (for screenplay) and the Palme d’Or award at the 1956 Cannes Film Festival. It is a short, whimsical and adventurous children’s fable about a young Parisian boy who happens upon a large, seemingly lost, red balloon and the playful, friendship, love, and dependency that develops between the two. The Red Balloon, while simple in concept, is a story suffused with the expansive wonder and pure innocence of a child’s imagination.Read More »

  • Albert Lamorisse – Bade-h Saba AKA Le vent des amoureux AKA The Lovers’ Wind (1978)

    1971-1980Albert LamorisseArthouseDocumentaryIran


    This is Albert Lamorisse’s last film. At the last stages of finishing the shooting in Iran, his helicopter crashed in the mountains of northern Iran, and the extremely talented and poetic filmmaker got killed immediately. Lamorisse, “Under the auspices of Iran’s Ministry of Culture and Art, produced the poetic film “Lovers’ Wind” (1969). Eighty-five percent of this dramatically visual film is shot from a helicopter, providing a kaleidoscopic view of the vast expanses, natural beauty, historical monuments, cities and villages of Iran. The “narrators” of the film are the various winds (the warm, crimson, evil and lovers’ winds), which according to folklore, inhabit Iran. They sweep the viewers from place to place across the Iranian landscape, introducing the incredible variety of life and scenery in Iran. Read More »

  • Albert Lamorisse – Le ballon rouge AKA The Red Balloon (1956)

    1951-1960Albert LamorisseDramaFranceShort Film


    The story of a boy and his toy, The Red Balloon is widely praised for its narrative and visual “purity,” but not enough is said about the movie’s delightful manipulation. A quasi-silent comedy with musical cues straight out of the Charlie Chaplin tradition, Albert Lamorisse’s film plays a game with its audience, just as the little boy (Pascal Lamorisse) and his glowing red orb cling to, fall away from, and chase each other throughout the 34-minute running time. With its many stairs and sloping alleyways, the blue-gray Ménilmontant neighborhood of Paris is like a maze, constantly threatening to come in between the boy and his new pal, but like a magnet or a dog starved for attention, the balloon always comes back to him. He lets go of it on his apartment balcony and watches it fall to him downstairs. He directs it to “wait here” while he buys a treat at the local bakery. A group of neighborhood bullies chase the balloon through a perilously narrow corridor, throwing rocks as it tries to escape. The honeymoon is short-lived, but Lamorisse suggests that kids are always keenly attuned to the objects of the world around them: After the boy loses his red friend, a montage of balloons across the city shows them flying to his side and, in the final shot, launching him into the sky. For Lamorisse, then, the pleasures of childhood are as fleeting as they are ecstatic.Read More »

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