MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 7,052 this week

The Magic Box (1951)

Approved  |   |  Biography, Drama  |  21 January 1952 (UK)
7.1
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.1/10 from 803 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

ON DISC

IMDb Picks: April

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in April.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 1875 titles
created 16 Sep 2012
 
a list of 36 titles
created 29 Aug 2013
 
a list of 30 titles
created 09 Oct 2013
 
a list of 985 titles
created 5 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 7.1/10

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... 

Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Ivan Kouznetsoff, a Russian engineer, recounts during World War II his stay in England prior to the war working on a new propeller for ice-breaking ships. Naïve about British people and ... See full summary »

Director: Anthony Asquith
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Penelope Dudley-Ward, Marjorie Fielding
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Stanley Windrush has to interrupt his university education when he is called up towards the end of the war. He quickly proves himself not to be officer material. This leads him to meets up ... See full summary »

Director: John Boulting
Stars: Dennis Price, Ian Carmichael, Terry-Thomas
Free Men (2011)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In Paris during WWII, an Algerian immigrant is inspired to join the resistance by his unexpected friendship with a Jewish man.

Director: Ismaël Ferroukhi
Stars: Tahar Rahim, Michael Lonsdale, Mahmud Shalaby
Crime | History | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

When the composer of an opera about a swashbuckling, wenching highwayman meets his hero's real life counterpart he's disappointed with his lack of dash.

Director: Peter Brook
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Hugh Griffith, George Rose
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An egocentric artillery captain and his venomous wife engage in savage unremitting battles in their isolated island fortress of the coast of Sweden at the turn of the century. Alice, a ... See full summary »

Director: David Giles
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Geraldine McEwan, Robert Lang
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

After spending three years in an asylum, a washed-up actor views a minor assignment from his old director in Rome as a chance for personal and professional redemption.

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Edward G. Robinson, Cyd Charisse
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
Term of Trial (1962)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Graham Weir is an alcoholic schoolteacher whose criminal record for refusing to fight during the Second World War has prevented him from progressing further in his teaching career. He is ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Glenville
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Simone Signoret, Sarah Miles
Uncle Vanya (1963)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Director: Stuart Burge
Stars: Michael Redgrave, Max Adrian, Lewis Casson
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Vincenzo Denizot
Stars: Alex Bernard, Filippo Boutens, Giovanni Casaleggio
Magic Box (1963)
Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Stars: Ranjan Kapoor, Sheila Kashmiri, Nasreen
The Smugglers (1947)
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Told in flashback, the film opens on a brutal scene of a 17-year-old boy, Francis Andrews, being brutally lashed during a police interrogation in which the boy thinks back to the past that ... See full summary »

Director: Bernard Knowles
Stars: Michael Redgrave, Jean Kent, Joan Greenwood
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

One of the extras in this movie is a teenage Ronnie Kray (later the infamous London gangster). 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 Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

There's a Long, Long Trail a-Winding
(1913) (uncredited)
Written by Zo Elliott and Stoddard King
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A biography of one of the true first inventors of the cinema.
30 March 1999 | by (Culver City, CA) – See all my reviews

A brilliant biography of one of the virtually unknown inventors of modern motion pictures. The historical aspects are incredibly well researched and detailed (look at the film credits)-- down to the reproduction of a beautiful example of his first twin-lensed motion picture camera, which was stereoscopic (which proved not be be practical until the introduction of polarized projection at the 1939 World's Fair). This film was made as a showcase piece for the 1951 "Festival of Britain" at the current location of the Royal Festival Hall and the Museum of the Moving Image on the banks of the Thames in London, England. What remains of the original Friese-Greene camera may be seen at the Science Museum in London. For those interested in the history of the cinema, and its earliest experiments, this is a "must see" film. Historical footage is brilliantly incorporated into the story. Although the presentation is a little bit slow by today's standards, it remains a fascinating and unique film. For related topics see the book "The Missing Reel", by Christopher Rawlence, about the other unknown film pioneer, Louis Aime Augustin Le Prince.


16 of 16 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:
?