MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 875 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 775 users  
Reviews: 24 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

Editors' Spotlight

Sundance 2015

Watch our IMDb & AIV Sundance Studio Interviews with Keith Simanton

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 21 titles
created 01 May 2011
 
a list of 36 titles
created 11 Dec 2011
 
a list of 258 titles
created 05 Jan 2013
 
a list of 30 titles
created 09 Oct 2013
 
a list of 3823 titles
created 7 months 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... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An unhappily married white policeman in Sierra Leone falls in love with a white girl and starts an affair. He soon starts feeling guilty.

Director: George More O'Ferrall
Stars: Trevor Howard, Elizabeth Allan, Maria Schell
I Walk Alone (1948)
Film-Noir | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Frankie Madison leaves prison expecting a share from his ex-partner. But Prohibition bootlegging didn't prepare Frankie for Big Business.

Director: Byron Haskin
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Lizabeth Scott, Kirk Douglas
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In pre-WW1 England, a youngster is expelled from a naval academy over a petty theft, but his parents raise a political furor by demanding a trial.

Director: Anthony Asquith
Stars: Robert Donat, Cedric Hardwicke, Basil Radford
Fantasy | Music | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A melancholy poet reflects on three women he loved and lost in the past: a mechanical performing doll, a Venetian courtesan, and the consumptive daughter of a celebrated composer.

Directors: Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Stars: Moira Shearer, Robert Rounseville, Ludmilla Tchérina
Lease of Life (1954)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The parson of a small rural community knows he is dying and this makes him reconsider his life so far and what he can still do to help the community.

Director: Charles Frend
Stars: Robert Donat, Kay Walsh, Denholm Elliott
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Rousing historical drama stars Stewart Granger as the leader of a group of late 19th-century Irish farmers who rebel against the cruel tactics of the local earl's landlord, whose name became synonymous with their treatment of him.

Director: Frank Launder
Stars: Stewart Granger, Kathleen Ryan, Cecil Parker
Comedy | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Lighthearted romp of a pre-war spy story: quirky British secret service man finds out who's using a secret weapon to steal experimental planes.

Directors: Tim Whelan, Arthur B. Woods
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Ralph Richardson, Valerie Hobson
Drama | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Stevenson, a British soldier fluent in Rumanian and German, goes undercover to sabotage a German poison-gas factory. He turns himself into Jan Tartu, a member of the Rumanian Iron Guard. ... See full summary »

Director: Harold S. Bucquet
Stars: Robert Donat, Valerie Hobson, Walter Rilla
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Vincenzo Denizot
Stars: Alex Bernard, Filippo Boutens, Giovanni Casaleggio
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Directors: Robert Donat, Alexander Shaw
Stars: Robert Donat, Renée Asherson, Marjorie Rhodes
Breakout (1959)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Drama set in an Italian prisoner of war camp during World War 2, where a group of British soldiers find their plans for escape thwarted by a mysterious traitor in their midst.

Director: Don Chaffey
Stars: Richard Todd, Bernard Lee, Michael Wilding
Europe '51 (1952)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Irene Girard is an ambassador's wife and used to always live in luxury. After the dramatic death of her son, she feels guilty of having neglected him and feels compelled to help people in ... See full summary »

Director: Roberto Rossellini
Stars: Ingrid Bergman, Alexander Knox, Ettore Giannini
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:

Approved | 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

The actress Amy Veness - shown in the cast list against Undetermined Role - can be identified as the elderly lady in black, a grandmother presumably, in the first wedding group we see being photographed in Mr.Guttenberg's studio. 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 »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits superimposed over a tablet bearing the following: THOMAS ALVA EDISON 1847 - 1931 THE INVENTOR OF MOTION PICTURES ETIENNE-JULES MAREY 1830 - 1908 FONTADEUR DU CINEMA LOUIS LE PRINCE 1842 - 1890 L'INVENTEUR DE LA CINEMATOGRAPHIE LOUIS LUMIERE 1864 - 1948 AVEC SON FRERE LE CREATEUR DU CINEMA MODERNE See more »

Connections

Featured in Great Performances: Laurence Olivier: A Life (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

Choral Concert
(uncredited)
Words and Music by William Alwyn
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

STUNNING picture.
16 February 1999 | by (Medford, Oregon US) – See all my reviews

A stunning biography of William Friese-Greene, the UK inventor who made important contributions towards the creation of the motion picture, then saw greatness pass him by. Brilliantly written by Eric Ambler, and with beautiful color photog by Jack Cardiff (working in the 3-strip Technicolor process that we see Friese-Greene working towards in the picture!). Robert Donat's performance in the lead is among his best screen work. As this was made on the occasion of Britain's 1951 "Festival of Lights", virtually every British actor of note at the time appears in the picture---but pay particularl attention for Laurence Olivier, as a London "bobby" who is the first to see Friese-Greene's "pictures that move", and for the film's closing line, delivered by Dennis Price.


9 of 9 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
British DVD plurality-1
Uncredited cameo? jeannash8-1
Discuss The Magic Box (1951) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?