MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 617 this week

The Magic Box (1951)

 -  Biography | Drama  -  21 January 1952 (UK)
7.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.2/10 from 737 users  
Reviews: 22 user | 11 critic

The story of William Friese-Greene, a British inventor who (this film would have you think) made the first movie camera.

Director:

Writers:

(based on the biography: Friese-Greene, Close-Up of an Inventor), (screenplay)
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 36 titles
created 11 Dec 2011
 
a list of 85 titles
created 08 Feb 2013
 
list image
a list of 48 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 30 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 399 titles
created 3 weeks ago
 

Related Items

Search for "The Magic Box" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Magic Box (1951)

The Magic Box (1951) on IMDb 7.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Magic Box.
Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 1 win. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: M Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Harriet Blossom, the lonely wife of a workaholic brassiere manufacturer, breaks her sewing machine and ends up in bed with the repairman, a mechanic from one of her husband's factories. The... See full summary »

Director: Joseph McGrath
Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Richard Attenborough, James Booth
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Antonia, the pampered wife of Martin Lynch-Gibbon, an upper class wine merchant, tells her husband that she is in love with their best friend, the psychiatrist Palmer Anderson. Palmer and ... See full summary »

Director: Dick Clement
Stars: Lee Remick, Richard Attenborough, Ian Holm
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Divorce lawyer Everard Logan thinks the woman who spent the night in his hotel room is the erring wife of his new client.

Director: Tim Whelan
Stars: Merle Oberon, Laurence Olivier, Binnie Barnes
Dunkirk (1958)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Two stories in one - an easygoing British Corporal in France finds himself responsible for the lives of his men when their officer is killed. He has to get them back to Britain somehow. ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Norman
Stars: John Mills, Richard Attenborough, Robert Urquhart
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

John Lewis is bored by his librarian's job and henpecked at home. Then Liz, wife of a local counciller, sets her sights on him. But this is risky stuff in a Welsh valleys town - if he and ... See full summary »

Director: Sidney Gilliat
Stars: Peter Sellers, Mai Zetterling, Virginia Maskell
Loot (1970)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Based on the play by 'Joe Orton' this film follows the adventures of two pals who have pulled off a bank robbery and have to hide the loot. Fortunately one of them works in a funeral parlor... See full summary »

Director: Silvio Narizzano
Stars: Lee Remick, Richard Attenborough, Hywel Bennett
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An anachronistic martinet RSM on a remote Colonial African army caught in a local coup d'etat must use his experience to defend those in his care.

Director: John Guillermin
Stars: Richard Attenborough, Jack Hawkins, Flora Robson
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A prominent London Psychologist seems to have taken his own life, causing stunned disbelief amongst his colleagues and patients. His teenage daughter refuses to believe it was suicide as ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Crichton
Stars: Stephen Boyd, Jack Hawkins, Richard Attenborough
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Taxicab driver Tom Banning is led to an abandoned bomb-site by an eight-year-old girl as an April-fool prank. The girl is later found murdered and Manning is picked up by Scotland Yard for ... See full summary »

Director: Lance Comfort
Stars: Richard Attenborough, Cathy O'Donnell, Derek Farr
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

An accountant is forced by circumstances to take a job at the racetrack. He is working at the betting window when he is drawn into a gang of criminals and their illegal schemes.

Director: Brian Desmond Hurst
Stars: Anne Crawford, David Farrar, Frederick Leister
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
Director: Carl Lamac
Stars: Lloyd Pearson, Maggie Rennie, Julien Mitchell
Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Director: Maurice Elvey
Stars: Nora Swinburne, Laurence Olivier, Norman McKinnel
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Renée Asherson ...
Miss Tagg (as Renee Asherson)
...
Jack Carter
...
Martin Boddey ...
Sitter in Bath Studio
Edward Chapman ...
Father in Family Group
John Charlesworth ...
Graham Friese-Greene
Maurice Colbourne ...
Bride's Father in Wedding Group
Roland Culver ...
1st Company Promoter
John Howard Davies ...
Maurice Friese-Greene
Michael Denison ...
Reporter
...
Joan Dowling ...
Maggie
Henry Edwards ...
Butler at Fox Talbot's
Mary Ellis ...
Mrs. Nell Collings
Marjorie Fielding ...
Elderly Viscountess
Edit

Storyline

Now old, ill, poor, and largely forgotten, William Freise-Greene was once very different. As young and handsome William Green he changed his name to include his first wife's so that it sounded more impressive for the photographic portrait work he was so good at. But he was also an inventor and his search for a way to project moving pictures became an obsession that ultimately changed the life of all those he loved. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A rich and deeply moving story of a man whose achievement opened up a new world, and of the two women whose love and sacrifices made it possible!

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 January 1952 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A Caixa Mágica  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD) | (edited) | (TV)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor) (as Colour by Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

William Friese-Greene's son Claude Friese-Greene continued to develop his father's colour process and produced a series of colour travelogues of Britain in the 1920s. These never achieved contemporary commercial success but formed the basis of a very popular 3-part BBC Television broadcast The Lost World of Friese-Greene (2006), after being preserved by the British Film Institute. See more »

Goofs

In 1915 when Green's three eldest sons join the army, the landlord's agent mentions that the Spanish influenza is going around. In actuality the Spanish influenza did not begin until 1918. See more »

Quotes

William Fox-Talbot: The original thinker - the innovator - mustn't mind seeming a little foolish to his contemporaries. He must always look to his star... In the end, he may still fail. That's unimportant. If he is true to himself, he won't be too unhappy or embittered, even in failure, and will still speak for what is good.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hugo (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Let the Great Big World Keep Turning
(1917) (uncredited)
Written by Nat Ayer and Clifford Grey
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Wonderful Robert Donat!
24 April 2005 | by See all my reviews

A first-class actor ,playing a character from his youth to an old man,with the same talent:he is as convincing as the mischievous boy who takes photographs unbeknown to his boss as the old man who tries to save the seventh art from the moneychangers in the Temple . The film has an unusually inventive construction:it is roughly made of two flashbacks ,but the first one takes place after the second one."The magic box" tells the story of a pioneer of the cinema who died in dire straits ("that's the price for a seat for pictures" )His destiny resembles that of Georges Méliès who ended his life selling candies in a railway station and who never complained about his fate.Geniuses often die unnoticed.The cinematography is splendid with tasteful colors ,the dialog does not forget humor (Donat:"Enjoy yourselves!Schell:"We're going to the church!!"),and there are very powerful scenes:the concert where Schell sings a moving solo "Where is he?I know not!I know not!";an ecstatic Donat showing his film to a constable .The cast is incredibly various and includes such luminaries as Laurence Olivier,Margaret Rutherford,Peter Ustinov,Stanley Holloway and more ,all in supporting parts or even often cameos.

How prophetic the pioneer's last words were!


6 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
TCM will show Jan. 5, 2009 rcs8
On TCM: Sep 06, 08:00PM 2009 STUPOR
Looking for memorable lines HilcoKlinkert
Uncredited cameo? jeannash8-1
British DVD plurality-1
Discuss The Magic Box (1951) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?