Balloon - IFFAM - 4th International Film Festival and Awards ‧ Macao

Mainland China | 2019 | 102’ | DCP | Colour | Tibetan | Group: B
Director: Pema Tseden

2019/12/07 19:00 Cinematheque‧Passion

Programmer’s Note

Adapted from a novel written by the director Pema Tseden, Balloon is largely filmed around the Qinghai Lake, on the Tibetan planes, where a family struggles against the conflicting dictates of nature, spirituality, politics, and free will. At once playful and allusive, Balloon approaches weighty themes, such as the poverty of Tibetan families and Tibetan’s women’s duties and rebellion against a traditional way of life, with beguiling brio and surprising hits of humour throughout. And while Tseden continues to unveil the culture of his homeland, with love and care, his regular cast members, Jinpa and Sonnam Wangmo add to the realistic depiction of a family split by prejudice with convincing performances. With its cool colour palate, desaturated visual look, attentive handheld camerawork and suggestive interplay between the open vistas of the plateau and the crammed interiors, the film is beautifully shot with painterly passages that seem to transpire somewhere between this world and the next. A milestone in the career of celebrated Tibetan auteur.

– Giovanna Fulvi


On the Tibetan grasslands, Dargye and Drolkar live a serene and ordinary life with their three sons and the grandfather. A condom sparks a series of embarrassments and dilemmas, breaking the harmony of the family. What matters more in the circle of life and death: soul or reality?


Pema Tseden

Pema Tseden is a Tibetan director, screenwriter and author whose published works including Temptation, The Colour of Death and Tharlo have received numerous awards and been translated into many languages. His seven films are globally known for their realistic portrayals of Tibetan culture and living conditions. They are The Silent Holy Stones (2005), The Search (2007), Old Dog (2010), The Sacred Arrow (2014), Tharlo (2015), Jinpa (2018) and Balloon (2019). Balloon had its world premiere at Venice in August and went on to play in Toronto in September.

Cast & Crew

Director Pema Tseden

Scriptwriter(s) Pema Tseden

Producer(s) Ying Liang, Huang Xufeng, Jacky Pang

Co-Producer(s) Liang Ying, Song Jia, Wang Lei

Cinematographer Songye Lu

Production Designer Daktse Dundrup

Editor Ching-Sung Liao, Di Jin

Music Peyman Yazdanian

Costumes Designer

Cast Sonam Wangmo, Jinpa, Yangshik Tso, Konchok, Dudul

Production Companies Tang Dynasty Cultural Communication (Beijing), Factory Gate Films, Mani Stone Pictures, Beijing China Central Plains Digital Cinema Line, Cultural Investment Holdings, iQIYI Pictures (co-presents)


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