Likeable with profound moments of beauty, Black Balloon was for the most part an unengaging meander appropriately compared to similarly suburban and teenage Aussie soaps. The potential of the device of an autistic character was wasted, seemingly content to not to make commentary beyond a one dimensional issue, with its inconvenience, shame and eventual twee reconciliation.
If I can express this without being callous, the gift of the disabled is to challenge and thereby enrich notions of the value of the human person, beyond the utilitarian. Here this was advanced some way but the selfishness of the brother, Thomas, alters so little and unconvincingly for the stiffness of his expression and the shallow narrative arch he plays through. And the sentimentality of the conclusion failed to satisfy that frustration of a chronic condition like autism in a family - much as Little Miss Sunshine provoked a “So What?!” from JvH last year.
Toni Collette does strikingly portray the energy sapping myth of independence, in her eyes, strong, determined, tired. She was a joy to watch.
Colour in Australia is different. I suppose physically, there is a dry redness to the landscape and depth of blue to the sky, but I wonder also if socially colour is different, as in the photography and architecture journals, I wonder that the colours aspired to are subtly different.