Introduction to Rube Goldberg

My research on the assigned topic for this week introduced me to Rueben Goldberg, the brilliant inventor and Pulitzer prize winning cartoonist who invented the Rube Goldberg Machine that was used in the movie ‘The Way things Go.’  I have seen the machine in action a lot of times and enjoyed it but didn’t know that there was an actual name for it. I think the use of the Rube Goldberg machine is a fun and entertaining way of incorporating art and humor into a simple or serious message. Goldberg himself used it to bring light to serious topics like politics and war.

To learn more about Goldberg, please watch the short biographical overview below by Eric Haines (video from

Has it inspired other cartoonists, videos or music? As I have mentioned, I didn’t know that I was watching the machine in action for a long time now. Thanks to this class, I have learned yet again something new! The machine has been used music videos, TV advertisements and movies. Speaking of movies, below is a video that names the Top 10 Rube Goldberg Machines in Movies.

Last but not least is one of my favorite use of Rube Goldberg animation by a Dutch discount store store called HEMA. Please click on the link, make sure you have some volume so you can listen to the sound effects too. Enjoy!


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