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Balloon Rated 12A


Dir. Pema Tseden. China, 2019. 1h 43m. Chinese/Tibetan/subs. Starring Sonam Wangmo, Jinpa, Druklha Dorje, Dudul, Yangshik Tso.

Living under the rule of China’s one-child policy, a Tibetan couple must be careful not to have any more children. However, their two sons find a stash of condoms and begin parading them around town mistaking them for balloons. Not only does this outrage the entire village, but more practically: they have no more condoms. Pema Tseden deftly examines the collision between modernity and tradition in 1980s Tibet in this wryly humorous and award-winning drama.

‘[A] mix of tranquillity, playfulness and a touch of melancholy becomes the evocative thread that runs through this leisurely film’ ★★★★ Phuong Le, The Guardian

‘You come away not knowing if what you’ve seen was comedy or tragedy. Or maybe something else entirely.’ ★★★★ David Jenkins, Little White Lies