The Balloonatic

1923

Comedy

6
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 72%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 72% · 500 ratings
IMDb Rating 6.6/10 10 3241 3.2K

Director

Top cast

Buster Keaton as The Young Man
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
241.39 MB
1280*960
English 2.0
NR
24 fps
12 hr 26 min
Seeds 6
448.05 MB
1440*1080
English 2.0
NR
24 fps
12 hr 26 min
Seeds 15

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by dhoffman 6 / 10

A lesser effort by Keaton

With a promising beginning, Keaton finds himself atop a balloon, descends to the basket only to find there is no floor and then uniquely brings the balloon down to ground. What follows are a series of loosely connected and often amusing gags. However, the whole ends up being less than the sum of the individual parts. No compelling strand effectively connects these humorous moments. The movie is worth watching because Keaton's genius always offers the unexpected; it will, however, provoke chuckles rather than laughter.

Reviewed by sashank_kini-1 7 / 10

The Balloonatic is Always on a High When it Comes to Entertainment Value. Its Another Triumph in the Joyful Keaton Shorts.

The Balloonatic is always on a high when it comes to entertainment value present in Keaton shorts. For the first time, it begins with a close up shot of a spooked Keaton at The House of Trouble, a haunted house at an amusement park. As the camera zooms out of his face, we see him walk towards three different rooms, each time to be surprised by a spooky figure. Once he gets out of the house, he watches a stout lady enter the same place. She loves the haunted house so much she enters the second time.

Keaton however moves on to another thrill and soon finds himself on top of a hot air balloon. The balloon crashes and Keaton lands on a tree. While fixing the balloon, he also goes to a lake and tries fishing; in his Keaton-esque manner, he tries to block the flow of water by placing a barricade rocks at the shallow point, only for the water to collect on the other side and soon crash into the barricade and take Keaton along. He encounters a girl who attacks him at first for coming in her way when she dives into the lake, but later becomes close to him.

The ending takes you by surprise as you fully expect a disaster only to be baffled. That's the high point of The Balloonatic, another triumph in the joyful Keaton shorts.

Reviewed by ackstasis 6 / 10

"After this bare (bear?) escape, a backwoods romance begins"

Buster Keaton produced many wonderful short films – 'The Love Nest (1923)' is my favourite so far – but, unfortunately, 'The Balloonatic (1923)' isn't one of them. Despite a fair share of funny jokes, the film is basically comprised of a number of different gags strung together with a flimsy pretense, and so it lacks any narrative cohesiveness. Considering that this was released in the same year as the feature 'Our Hospitality (1923),' which had a terrifically-dark storyline to complement the jokes, this short really does come across as disappointing. Indeed, even the title promises more than the film actually delivers, with barely a quarter of the running time concerned with hot-air balloons. However, cast aside these trivial complaints, and you can simply enjoy Buster's antics for what they are. The actor/director's comedic work still sparkles with imagination and creativity, and few entertainers could have achieved such hilarious results with something as simple as a collapsible canoe. Also, it beats me how he avoided drowning on at least one occasion.

The story opens at a carnival, where hopeless romantic Buster goes out looking for love in a "House of Trouble." As always, it's interesting to note just how stone-faced he remains as numerous ominous figures emerge from dark doorways; his body language communicates fear and panic, but his facial expressions remains astonishingly deadpan. After finding his way out of the attraction, Buster then ruins a perfectly good jacket in being kind to a beautiful lady, before earning a black eye from another pretty girl (Phyllis Haver) who presumably rejected his advances. Buster then inadvertently catches a ride on the top of a hot-air balloon, which brings him down in the middle of the wilderness, where – surprise! – the girl who punched him is enjoying a lonely fishing trip. The pair try their best to ignore each other, thinking up elaborate techniques to survive comfortably in the forest, until all that remains is for Buster and Phyllis to fall in love. This silly story makes for some enjoyable enough gags, including, most memorably, Buster's face-to-face meeting with two curious bears.

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