The Rolling Ball Web
An Online Compendium of Rolling Ball Sculptures, Clocks, Etc.
By David M. MacMillan et. al.
Vance Bass (email@example.com) has been told that the made-for-video movie Honey We Shrunk Ourselves has a rolling ball piece in it.
It was brought to my attention by Frank Deutschmann (firstname.lastname@example.org) that the movie Intersection with Richard Gere features a Congreve style rolling ball clock.
Peter Bacon (email@example.com) notes that there is a Japanese movie, distributed in the US as The Family Game, which incorporates a rolling ball toy.
This film is a satire on the subject of Japanese life in which a teenage boy, Shigeyuki (played by Ichirota Miyagawa), has a rolling ball toy in his room. Peter Bacon feels that this rolling ball toy doesn't get nearly the camera time it deserves, and I concur. The rolling ball toy appears to be a commercial toy. Shigeyuki has it because he dreams, in his discontent with his family and school, of roller coasters. When he was a young child, he memorized a book about roller coasters, and in the film posters of roller coasters appear on the walls of his room. The rolling ball toy seems to get the most camera time whenever we see deepest into Shigeyuki. It appears briefly near the beginning of the film when his discontent is at its highest. It appears more extensively later in the film when his work with his tutor becomes successful.
The film is based on a novel by Yohei Honma. I have not read this novel, and do not know whether or not it contains a rolling ball toy.
Visually, the rolling ball toy in this movie appears much like the commercial rolling ball toy by Ban Dai, but I do not know if it is in fact one of their products.
Note: These reviews (online and in print) are simply the ones that came to my attention in a brief search. I'm not endorsing any review or reviewing service.
Availability (US, 1996)
At the time of writing this film is available for sale in the U.S., with subtitles, for US$59.95.
Daryl Bender (firstname.lastname@example.org) notes that the movie Powder contains a brief clip of a back-and-forth ramp marble run.
In the 1960s, Sesame Street featured a segment with a rolling ball sculpture. The ball in this sculpture counted to three in a variety of ways. A correspondent inquired with the Children's Television Workshop as to the availability of this segment. It is available on a CTW home video entitled Learning About Numbers. This may be purchased or rented through ordinary video stores, or it may be obtained directly from the CTW Home Video Department at (212) 875-6695.
I extend a personal caution - every time I see this video, I am unable to get the background music to the rolling ball sequence out of my head for days.
A friend tells me that in the Harrison Ford movie Witness Ford's character constructs a rolling ball toy as a gift.
With the exception of any material noted as being in the public domain, the text, images, and encoding of this document are copyright © 1996-1998 by David M. MacMillan.
This document is licensed for private, noncommercial, nonprofit viewing by individuals on the World Wide Web. Any other use or copying, including but not limited to republication in printed or electronic media, modification or the creation of derivative works, and any use for profit, is prohibited.
This writing is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but "as-is," without any warranty of any kind, expressed or implied; without even the implied warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.
In no event will the author(s) or editor(s) of this document be liable to you or to any other party for damages, including any general, special, incidental or consequential damages arising out of your use of or inability to use this document or the information contained in it, even if you have been advised of the possibility of such damages.
In no event will the author(s) or editor(s) of this document be liable to you or to any other party for any injury, death, disfigurement, or other personal damage arising out of your use of or inability to use this document or the information contained in it, even if you have been advised of the possibility of such injury, death, disfigurement, or other personal damage.
All trademarks or registered trademarks used in this document are the properties of their respective owners and (with the possible exception of any marks owned by the author(s) or editor(s) of this document) are used here for purposes of identification only. A trademark catalog page lists the marks known to be used on these web pages. Please e-mail email@example.com if you believe that the recognition of a trademark has been overlooked.
Feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org
Go to the: