MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 3,441 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 809 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: May

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in May, sponsored by COVERGIRL.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 2382 titles
created 23 Apr 2013
 
a list of 30 titles
created 09 Oct 2013
 
a list of 85 titles
created 9 months ago
 
a list of 33 titles
created 4 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
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 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
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
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 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
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
Il messia (1975)
Biography | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Director: Roberto Rossellini
Stars: Pier Maria Rossi, Mita Ungaro, Carlos de Carvalho
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
Short | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Pluto, having seen the earth, comes back home amazed at the success of that well-known dance, the "cake-walk." He has brought back with him two noted well-known dancers, who start their ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Vincenzo Denizot
Stars: Alex Bernard, Filippo Boutens, Giovanni Casaleggio
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
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Frank "women in prison" story that sympathetically tracks several inmates through their imprisonment and subsequent return to society. Some are successfully rehabilitated; some are not.

Director: J. Lee Thompson
Stars: Glynis Johns, Diana Dors, John Gregson
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

In an AFI poll actor Jack Lemmon named "The Magic Box" as his favorite film. 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 prologue: WILLIAM FRIESE-GREENE 1855 1921 followed by the year 1921 See more »

Connections

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

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 10 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:
?