Balloon

Pema Tseden
Sat 24 Apr 21 and Sun 2 May 21
  • Not harmful / all ages

The innocent game the sons of a Tibetan shepherds family play with rationed condoms, poses their parents a difficult dilemma.

In the grand green meadows of Tibet, we find three generations of a sheepherders’ family living under the same roof. When the two young sons find condoms in their parents’ bedroom, they think they are inflatable balloons to play with outside. Darhye, their father, disapproves of course. In the eighties, the birth control of the Chinese government was to be abided by strictly, and during this time there was a shortage of free condoms. Darhye is a beast in the bedroom and his wife, Drolkar, wants to have herself sterilized at the local hospital. But it is already too late, they had an ‘accident’: Drolkar is pregnant again. The pressure to have an abortion is great, but in the meantime Darhye’s father is gravely ill and lies on his deathbed. Can they break the cycle of life and death just like that?

Visually stunning with a pinch of humour. Like his previous film Jinpa, we follow multiple storylines in Balloon. We can see the rich and multifaceted diversity of the Tibetan society and its contradictions between real-life and local traditions.

direction
Pema Tseden
duration
102 min
year
2019
country
China
language
Tibetan
Subtitles
Dutch
  • Not harmful / all ages

#eenkindpolitiek #condoom #moderniteit #traditie #tibet

young critics 

locations and tickets

Pema Tseden

director

Delicate, playful and slightly mystical

The Hollywood Reporter