Balloon, which was selected for the “Chinese New style” unit of the 23th Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) announces to be premiered on November 20. Directed by Pema Tseden, the film is produced by the same crew behind Tharlo (2015) and Jinpa(2018), contouring how Tibetan people live in front of great social changes in a literature way.
Poster of Balloon
Pema Tseden got his inspiration for Balloon from a red balloon he saw in Zhongguancun area, Beijing, years ago. It is about how a common Tibetan family dealt with the painful choice between the spiritual and real world in the 1990s, which was accidentally caught into trouble. It is written and directed by Pema Tseden, starred by Soinam Wangmo, Jinpa and Yangshik Tso. The director for the first time tells a story from the perspective of a woman. With two lines intertwined, it blends in his thoughts on family planning, life, death and afterlife in a calm tone. Compared with his previous productions, it is easier and faster-paced, combining reality with imagination.
A still of Balloon
To ensure the film quality, Balloon invites Ching-Song Liao and Jin Di as editors, Duu-Chih Tu and Shu-yao Wu as supervising sound editors, and Peyman Yazdanian, who is favored by the master director Abbas Kiarostami from Iran to compose soundtracks
Balloon was screened in a couple of Chinese and foreign film festivals including the 76th Venice Film Festival, 44th Toronto International Film Festival and 24th Busan International Film Festival, receiving a number of awards and nominations and rated as “the most beautiful film in the Venice Film Festival” by Jean-Michel Frodon, a renowned French film critic and an expert in film history.
The director Pema Tseden on the site of Balloon
Balloon was selected into the 23th SIFF “Chinese New style” unit in July, and was warmly received by the audience after being screened in Shanghai. Pema Tseden was awarded “Top Media-Attention Director” and “Top Media-Attention Writer” in the China Movie Channel Media Award unit on the ground that juries thought he delivered excellent performance as both a director and writer, “harmonizing the two art forms” in their words.
Pema Tseden in the 19th SIFF closing ceremony
Pema Tseden starts his career as a Tibetan director from 2002, and refreshes people’s impression of the Tibetan culture and life with his detailed insights into his hometown. He is also an old friend of SIFF. He won the Best Director Award with The Silent Holy Stones at the Asian New Talent Award, 9th Shanghai International Film Festival, in 2006, which embarks his friendship with SIFF; and in 2009, he won the Grand Jury Prix with The Search in the 12th SIFF. What’s more, he served as a jury member for the Asian New Talent Award in 2010 and Golden Goblet Award in 2016.