The Black Balloon

2008

Action / Drama / Romance

50
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 88%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 85%
IMDb Rating 7.3 10 8023

Synopsis


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Downloaded 61,876 times
August 25, 2011 at 06:59 PM

Director

Cast

Toni Collette as Maggie Mollison
Rhys Wakefield as Thomas Mollison
Gemma Ward as Jackie Masters
Luke Ford as Charlie Mollison
720p.BLU
622.54 MB
1280*720
English
PG-13
24.000 fps
1hr 37 min
P/S 0 / 8

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by denis888 1 / 10

Probably, This Is The Worst Movie I Watched In Years

...and I watch quite many movies, I tell you. So, did anyone understand what this absolutely awful movie was about? Because I didn't. It was luck that I didn't watch this awful abomination in the theater, so I had a DVD at home and thus possessed this ultra necessary ability to skip or turn it off straightaway. This is a true, thick, loud abomination of a film which screams for one outcome - to be deemed worst. Australian filmmakers can do fine films but in this case they failed at all possible levels - the plot was murky and downright dull, the performance was so poor you had to rub your eyes, the cringe-worthy scenes came in so often that I nearly vomited and I am not that easy to be driven to throwing up. Autism? A serious study of a case? Nay, in fact what we saw was a sick unbearable array of horrid uneasy moments that were simply not to be shot at all. Gemma Ward. Yes, she is awesome lady - long legs, great body, sweet smile, elfish face. This is all, kids. You can go to bed, as she offered nothing except hew looks but looks never save the weak plot. She is simply weak and not convincing in any way. The rest? Just skip it - the movie seemed to slide along a surface never getting any deeper or decent. The verdict - cringe-worthy array of sick moments, shallow plot and terrible film. Zero is the only rating for this piece of utter trash.

Reviewed by SnoopyStyle 7 / 10

needs more Toni Collette

Fifteen year old Thomas Mollison (Rhys Wakefield) moves to a new place with his parents (Toni Collette, Erik Thomson) and his autistic brother Charlie (Luke Ford). Thomas is awkward and embarrassed about his brother. Charlie runs into Jackie Masters (Gemma Ward)'s home to use the toilet while she's in the shower. Maggie's pregnancy gets difficult and she has to stay in the hospital. With their father away with the Army much of the time, Thomas becomes stuck taking care of Charlie. Jackie befriends Thomas and Charlie.

Thomas is a whiny embarrassed teenager. That can be very off-putting. I can't blame the character but it keeps the movie from being a lovable coming-of-age story. It's a tougher more painful thing. It comes with poo and all. Gemma Ward injects a lightness to the movie. It does miss Toni Collette for long stretches. Her absence is keenly felt. The movie drags on a little too long after the climatic blowup but it's still a compelling family drama.

Reviewed by Rich Wright 8 / 10

The balloon that'll never go POP

I've seen some dysfunctional families in my time, but Thomas REALLY has it rough. His mother is about to give birth and doesn't get off his case, his dad seems to take orders from a teddy called Rex, as well as being completely useless... and there's his brother Charlie. Who happens to be severely autistic. We're talking about constantly rocking back and forth, unable to communicate apart from with sign language, having random fits in public and rushing into total stranger's houses to use their bathroom facilities. To call him a 'handful' would be a gross understatement.

Thomas wants out. He's fed up of doing everything around the house, his sibling embarrassing him in public and being bullied at school due to his 'situation'. Then, thanks in part to his brother's antics, he meets a lovely girl called Jackie, and things start looking up. Not only is she a beautiful, warm, compassionate human being, she can seemingly look past Charlie's bizarre behaviour and appreciate who he is. Even if he does steal tampons from her bag and suck on them...

The key to the success of The Black Balloon is it really puts us in Thomas's shoes, and we suffer alongside him as he tries to make the best of a very stressful lifestyle. It's bad enough having to watch his brother 24/7, but when he starts acting up around people who don't understand his condition and they just look on with contempt, what can he do? He hates his brother due to the unwanted attention he attracts everywhere, and you can understand why he lashes out at Charlie several times. Only judge if you've worked a mile in their shoes, etc.

The performances are out of this world, is Luke Ford (as Charlie) not disabled in real life? Every little detail, from the facial expressions, to the little tics he displays rings true. Note to Dustin Hoffman: THIS is someone with a serious handicap, not your card-counting, won't-go-on-plane has-difficulty-dancing social misfit from Rain Man. We dislike Charlie for the way he disrupts everyone's lives... but he can't help it, and he still shows enough during his quieter moments to demonstrate he can be very good-natured. Rhys Wakefield also effectively garners sympathy as the woe-be-gone Thomas, and Toni Collette as usual adds a touch of class as the mum of this chaotic brood.

Filled with heartbreaking and inspirational moments, it's a treasure of a film... especially for those who have to live this way. If it teaches us anything, it's that should never give up on those you love. The more you put in, the more you'll get back in the long run... 8/10

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