The most profound short that I have ever seen.
Balance stresses the need for Cooperation in society when, in our present times, Individuality is paramount. In this film, the whole world is a raft in space, containing only four men, who are fishing. They must always work as a team, spreading out around the raft (world), to keep it in balance, or else they will all fall off into the void. To be together, they must all be in the middle, to keep the raft from tipping over. One man pulls up a chest that plays music very quietly. He desires to keep the chest for himself, so he does not move it to the middle of the raft, where all could enjoy it. The desire of all to be close to that chest undermines their teamwork, with dire results. It is fascinating to watch how, in their desire for the chest, they begin to test the limits of their environment, just as man is currently doing with pollution. This film stresses that when you finally do find out what the environmental limits are, the damage is already done: it is too late; disaster will ensue. It should be a requirement that all students study this film in class, every few years--since their understanding of it will grow as they do. This visual impression could have a profound impact on the environmental thinking of future generations, if we allow them to exist. Balance is the best allegory and the best short that I have ever seen. If you like Balance, then I would suggest that you watch Neighbours (1952) by the great Canadian animator Norman McLaren.
- Tom Murray
- Apr 24, 2001
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