7.4/10
830
19 user 11 critic

Theremin: An Electronic Odyssey (1994)

Trailer
1:03 | Trailer

Watch Now

$0.00 with Prime Video

ON DISC
A documentary about the inventor of the first electronic synthesiser instrument and his subsequent life after he was abducted by the KGB as well as a history of his instrument.

Director:

Reviews
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Moog (2004)
Documentary | History | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Bob Moog shaped musical culture with some of the most inspiring electronic instruments ever created. This "compelling documentary portrait of a provocative, thoughtful and deeply ... See full summary »

Director: Hans Fjellestad
Stars: Charlie Clouser, Herbert Deutsch, Keith Emerson
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A documentary about evolution.

Stars: David Attenborough
Genghis Blues (1999)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

San Francisco bluesman and composer, Paul Peña makes a musical pilgrimage to the land of Tuva.

Director: Roko Belic
Stars: Richard Feynman, B.B. King, Kongar-ol Ondar
Woodstock (1970)
Documentary | History | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The film chronicle of the legendary 1969 music festival.

Director: Michael Wadleigh
Stars: Joan Baez, Richie Havens, Roger Daltrey
Husbands (1970)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A common friend's sudden death brings three men, married with children, to reconsider their lives and ultimately leave together. But mindless enthusiasm for regained freedom will be ... See full summary »

Director: John Cassavetes
Stars: Ben Gazzara, Peter Falk, John Cassavetes
Gimme Shelter (1970)
Documentary | Music | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A harrowing documentary of the Stones' 1969 tour, with much of the focus on the tragic concert at Altamont.

Directors: Albert Maysles, David Maysles, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Mick Taylor
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Los Angeles private eye Philip Marlowe is hired by paroled convict Moose Malloy to find his girlfriend Velma, former seedy nightclub dancer.

Director: Dick Richards
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Charlotte Rampling, John Ireland
Star 80 (1983)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A successful young model finds trouble when her obsessive manager-turned-husband becomes dangerously jealous. Based on the true story of 1980 Playmate of the Year Dorothy Stratten.

Director: Bob Fosse
Stars: Mariel Hemingway, Eric Roberts, Cliff Robertson
Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A cinematic portrait of the life and career of the infamous American execution device designer and holocaust denier.

Director: Errol Morris
Stars: Fred A. Leuchter Jr., Robert Jan Van Pelt, David Irving
Documentary | Biography | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

As the front man of the Clash from 1977 onwards, Joe Strummer changed people's lives forever. Four years after his death, his influence reaches out around the world, more strongly now than ... See full summary »

Director: Julien Temple
Stars: Joe Strummer, Steve Jones, Mick Jones
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

An innovative concert movie for the rock group The Talking Heads.

Director: Jonathan Demme
Stars: David Byrne, Bernie Worrell, Alex Weir
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A fictionalized account of the early life of the American president as a young lawyer facing his greatest court case.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Henry Fonda, Alice Brady, Marjorie Weaver
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Leon Theremin ...
Himself - Inventor of the Theremin
Clara Rockmore ...
Herself - Theremin Virtuoso
Robert Moog ...
Himself - Inventor of the Moog Synthesizer
Nicolas Slonimsky ...
Himself - Composer and Historian
Paul Shure ...
Himself - Musician
Henry Solomonoff ...
Himself - Theremin Studio Member
Suki Bader ...
Herself - Theremin Dancer
Beryl Campbell ...
Herself - Theremin Dancer
Lydia Kavina ...
Herself - Theremin's Great Niece
...
Himself - Founder of The Beach Boys
Todd Rundgren ...
Himself - Musician and Producer
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Himself (archive footage) (as Lenin)
Edit

Storyline

A documentary about the amazing life of Leon Theremin, inventor of the theremin, the electronic musical instrument so beloved of 50s sci-fi movie music. Theremin amazed America with his instrument until his kidnapping by Soviet agents in the mid-30s. Upon his release from a labor camp, he worked on surveillance devices for the KGB. Almost 60 years later , he is brought back to America for a touching reunion with his friends and colleagues. Written by Erik Gregersen <erik@astro.as.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Music He Created Was Strange. His Life Was Even Stranger.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 August 1995 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$187,923 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In addition to being the inventor of the musical instrument that bears his name, Léon Theremin was also the inventor of the eavesdropping electronic-bugging device. See more »

Goofs

In the documentary, Bob Moog makes a statement to the effect that Stradivarius designed the first violin. "Stradivarius" is not a person but refers to a musical instrument, usually a violin, made by Antonio Stradivari and his family. The violin existed as an instrument for more than a century before the birth of Antonio Stradivari in 1644. See more »

Quotes

Himself - Founder of The Beach Boys: It sounded like one of those scary movies where - OOOH - a weird trip, you know. Weird facial expressions. Weird, you know. It's almost sexual.
See more »

Connections

Features The Delicate Delinquent (1957) See more »

Soundtracks

This Room is My Castle of Quiet
Written by Harry Revel (uncredited)
Arranged and Conducted by Billy May (uncredited)
[Wrongly attributed to The Great Les Baxter as performer]
from the Capitol album "Music for Peace of Mind" (uncredited)
Courtesy Capitol Records
Bax Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Interesting and unique story
11 September 2004 | by See all my reviews

Fascinating story. Well-done film. I had never heard of Theremin, although of course I had heard the sound of the instrument in movies and in Good Vibrations. The film documented a piece of musical history and an unusual life story while many of the principle players were still alive to participate.

It is not only a story about music, but also about the reach of the Soviet Union into the U.S. It is amazing that this story has not received more attention in the past. In the process of telling about Theremin's life, the film gives a glimpse into the lives of other artists who were associated with him in New York and of his influence on contemporary music.


14 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Needs English Subtitles and Names of folks being interviewed... jazzcat320
Brian Wilson at his nadir SloppyMoe
Interactive Theremin Google Doodle printphi
Discuss Theremin: An Electronic Odyssey (1994) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page