Netflix’s new movie 6 Balloons is surprisingly haunting.
In just 71 minutes it depicts the quiet, unrelenting pain of loving someone who you can’t help, no matter how hard you try.
Someone who is so far down their own path of addiction and self destruction that loving them can only cause you pain.
But you do it anyway, because you can’t imagine walking away from them.
It tells the story of Katie (Broad City’s Abbi Jacobson) a twenty-something who’s planning a surprise party for her boyfriend.
Abbi Jacobson and Dave Franco star in 6 Balloons. Post continues.
In the opening sequences of the movie it becomes immediately clear there’s a heavy cloud hanging over Katie.
There’s a storm that’s brewing and threatening to drown her, a storm that she knows all too well.
That heavy cloud turns out to be her brother Seth (Dave Franco), a single dad who is addicted to heroin.
When Katie goes to pick up Seth and his daughter Ella for the party, she notices his unopened mail and realises he has relapsed into his heroin addiction.
Katie then spends most of the evening trying desperately to get help for Seth, even when he doesn’t want to help himself.
She takes him to a detox centre, but they refuse his insurance. So she puts him in an Uber to travel across town to another detox centre.
That detox centre won’t admit him.
Katie then drives across town to pick him up. At this point Seth is in such a bad way that she agrees to get him some heroin. In that moment, she becomes his greatest enabler because she has no other choice.
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Fearing for everyone’s safety, Katie leaves Seth and Bella in the car and walks into a dark, grimy alleyway to meet a drug dealer.
This moment marks a bit of a turning point for Katie and throughout the rest of the movie she has to decide – is it more painful to stand beside someone and watch them self destruct? Or to walk away and force them to help themself?
6 Balloons is not a big blockbuster, it was made on a relatively small budget. It’s not a laugh out loud comedy, but it is sweetly funny. It’s not a dramatic tearjerker, but it’s the kind of movie that will make you a little sad and a little bit reflective.
It’s a quiet, brilliant movie that shows how hard it is to walk away from someone you love, even when you have no other choice.
6 Balloons is streaming on Netflix now.