Five ‘circulating object’ movies
The influential film historian David Bordwell has used the phrase “circulating object” to describe films in which some common entity links otherwise unrelated stories. WINCHESTER ’73 ( Anthony Mann,1950) It’s a rifle. James Stewart, Shelley Winters and Rock Hudson are among those who encounter the weapon in Mann’s great western.
THE YELLOW ROLLS
ROYCE ( Anthony Asquith, 1964) It’s a car. Scripted by Terrence Rattigan, the creaky drama places Rex Harrison, Jeanne Moreau and Shirley MacLaine on the plush seats.
AU HASARD BALTHAZAR (Robert Bresson, 1966) It’s a donkey. Bresson’s heart-breaking film details the suffering of that creature under various owners.
THE RED VIOLIN ( François Girard, 1998) It’s a violin. The instrument appears first in 17th-century Italy and, after many adventures with Samuel L Jackson, among others, ends upin 29th-century Canada.
WARHORSE ( Steven Spielberg, 2011) It’s a horse. Joey is buffeted from soldier to farmer throughout the first World War.