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The White Balloon (Badkonake sefid)

The White Balloon (Badkonake sefid) (1995)



Average Rating: 6.1/10
Critic Reviews: 7
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 2

No consensus yet.



liked it
Average Rating: 4/5
User Ratings: 1,653

My Rating

Movie Info

Iranian filmmaker Jafar Pinahi's debut feature The White Balloon tells the story of Razieh (Aida Mohammadkhani), a seven-year-old girl intent on buying a new goldfish in time for Tehran's annual New Year's Day festivities (in Iranian culture, the goldfish is a symbol of life). Upon badgering her mother into giving her a 500-toman banknote, Razieh heads off to the marketplace alone; it is her first real experience away from her parents' watchful eyes, and the excitement and wonder she feels is

Jan 14, 1997

October Films

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All Critics (26) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (16) | Rotten (4)

By putting itself in sync with the rhythms of everyday life, it offers a reminder that the simplest forms of filmmaking can be the most satisfying.

February 14, 2001 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
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We need to fall in love with Razieh to see the film properly, and we do.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
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Panahi has much the same kind of talent, a concern to make his film a kind of home for its characters, but he has not yet found [Kiarostami's] secret, how to find and hold the still point of the turning world.

January 1, 2000 | Comment (1)
The New Republic
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Raziah takes everything at face value, forcing us to look again at people and situations we would immediately judge as good or bad -- reason enough to see this film.

January 1, 2000
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Panahi brings film back to its elemental magic.

January 1, 2000
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There are LONG stretches of... well, real time.

January 1, 2000
Top Critic IconTop Critic

In an era when ethnic hatred turns groups against each other, it is salutary to come across a film about universal qualities linking people from different cultures.

February 22, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

[Mohammadkhani] has no screen presence and more over was about as much fun to listen to as someone scraping their fingers down a blackboard.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Internet Reviews
Internet Reviews

Explores childhood on its own terms, with great respect and an unerring sense of truth.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Memorably simple, memorably resonant.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Sacramento Bee
Sacramento Bee

Simple yet appealing movie from Iran's burgeoning film industry.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

The brilliance of the film, is in its simplicity.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Without it ever being said, we get to meet and deeply appreciate some of the Iranian people who never make the news.

January 1, 2000
Jam! Movies

Often this movie just feels like a walk in the park with a recalcitrant child. How much can you stand to watch?

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: San Francisco Examiner
San Francisco Examiner

Audience Reviews for The White Balloon (Badkonake sefid)

It was brilliant, specially the simplicity of the movie, It is about a girl who sets out to buy a goldfish, but things happen on the way.

This is a very slow paced movie. The plot is thin in terms and it frustrated me in the beginning with distractive style. However it is quite funny on the surface.
May 6, 2009
Daisy Maduro

Super Reviewer

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  • El globo blanco (ES)
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