The red balloon will stay with you forever.
It can make you wrestle with the very idea of what a story is.
A great story is incomplete.
A story is never complete in itself. A good story becomes complete when the audience or the reader merges into it. A great story transcends the desire for completion.
The red balloon ends after 34 minutes but it stays incomplete.
‘ What is the story about’ has ready simplistic answers at hand.
‘What does the story mean’ has no one answer. And that is so beautiful about experiencing it.
Searching for the answer leads us onto the familiar conceptual tool-kit of metaphors, allegories. We can bandy about words like narrative and structure and impose some sense. And this movie just like its red ballon floats away from the sense-making world. Which is why it is such a compelling watch for all those who seek to make a living out of story-telling, be they artistes, writers, or trainers.
The movie restores mystery and magic to its unassailable place in explaining what makes a great story possible. And where is this place? There is no place. There is an emptiness, a nothingness that makes it possible. A great story flows from an unknown source.
Just be. The movie delights in just being. It stays incomplete because it continues to be a part of us.