MAKE:TNT Tools 'n' Tips

The Way Things Go

Tool photo.

You may have seen the Honda commercial where parts from an Accord are used to create a fantastic Rube Goldberg-like contraption. That footage pays homage to artists Fischli and Weiss' 1987 film, The Way Things Go, which opens with a large garbage bag suspended from a twisted rope. As the ropee unwinds, the bag lowers until it bumps into a tire, which begins to roll, and the chain reaction begins its way through the warehouse.

Common objects are employed: tires, ladders, chairs, and bottles - even a humorous pair of old shoes. And there;s more than just kunetic interaction: chemical reactions, firem and even crude rockets and explosions are used to make things go. Sometimes events happen fast; other times, you have to endure the anticipation, perhaps while a container slowly fills with enough water to make a can float and tip a chair.