MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 24,459 this week

Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894)

Not Rated  |   |  Short
6.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.8/10 from 1,085 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 5 critic

The sound has been found in the form of an old Edisonian recording cylinder. The cylinder was repaired, then Walter Murch ACE MPSE synced the film to the correct music in (I believe) 2002. Total running time is approximately 17 seconds.

Director:

(uncredited)
0Check in
0Share...

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

list image
a list of 25 titles
created 12 Sep 2011
 
list image
a list of 1213 titles
created 18 May 2012
 
a list of 40 titles
created 23 Jul 2013
 
list image
a list of 40 titles
created 10 Sep 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894)

Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894) on IMDb 6.8/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Dickson Experimental Sound Film.
1 win. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Cinderella (1899)
Drama | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A fairy godmother magically turns Cinderella's rags to a beautiful dress, and a pumpkin into a coach. Cinderella goes to the ball, where she meets the Prince - but will she remember to leave before the magic runs out?

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Barral, Bleuette Bernon, Carmely
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A household gardener is outside watering the garden. Unknown to him, the son of another servant sneaks up behind him and steps on the hose, stopping the flow of water. The befuddled ... See full summary »

Director: Francis Doublier
Short | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Using every known means of transportation, several savants from the Geographic Society undertake a journey through the Alps to the Sun which finishes under the sea.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Annabelle (Whitford) Moore performs one of her popular dances. For this performance, her costume has a pair of wings attached to her back, to suggest a butterfly. As she dances, she uses her long, flowing skirts to create visual patterns.

Director: William K.L. Dickson
Stars: Annabelle Moore
Comedy | Sci-Fi | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A butcher puts a full-grown live pig into his large box-like machine. Moments later, he draws out a full range of pork products, many already packaged for sale.

Director: Louis Lumière
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Three men hammer on an anvil and pass a bottle of beer around.

Director: William K.L. Dickson
Stars: Charles Kayser, John Ott
Men Boxing (1891)
Documentary | Short | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

Two men wearing boxing gloves prepare to spar in the Edison Company studio.

Directors: William K.L. Dickson, William Heise
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

A charming representation of the Mikado dance by three beautiful Japanese ladies in full costume. Very effective when colored. (from the Edison Catalog)

Directors: William K.L. Dickson, William Heise
Stars: The Sarashe Sisters
Annie Oakley (1894)
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The 'Little Sure Shot' of the 'Wild West.' Exhibition of Rifle Shooting at Glass Balls, etc. (from the Edison Catalog)

Director: William K.L. Dickson
Stars: Annie Oakley
The Black Imp (1905)
Short | Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A traveler at an inn is harassed by a mischievous devil in his room.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Miss Jerry (1894)
Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

The adventures of a female reporter in the 1890s.

Director: Alexander Black
Stars: Blanche Bayliss, William Courtenay, Chauncey Depew
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A greedy tycoon decides, on a whim, to corner the world market in wheat. This doubles the price of bread, forcing the grain's producers into charity lines and further into poverty. The film... See full summary »

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Frank Powell, Grace Henderson, James Kirkwood
Edit

Cast

Uncredited cast:
William K.L. Dickson ...
Violinist (uncredited)
Edit

Storyline

The earliest extant sound film. William K.L. Dickson stands in the background next to a huge sound pickup horn connected to a Thomas Edison phonograph recorder. As he plays a violin, two men dance in the foreground. This film was made to demonstrate a new Thomas Edison machine, the Kinetophone. These machines were Kinetoscope peepshow viewers mated with Thomas Edison wax cylinder phonographs. But the Kinetophone never caught on and this film was never released. The film still exists, but the phonograph soundtrack has been lost. Written by Steven W. Siferd <ssiferd@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short

Certificate:

Not Rated
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Also Known As:

Dickson kísérleti hangosfilmje  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(2003 release)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The synchronized sound version was restored in 2000 by Walter Murch, Rick Schmidlin, Industrial Light and Magic, and Skywalker Sound which is a division of Lucas Digital, Ltd., LLC (a George Lucas company) in collaboration with the Library of Congress and the Edison National Historic Site. See more »

Quotes

Man: Are the rest of you ready? Go ahead!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Cinema Inocente (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

The Chimes of Normandy
(1877) (uncredited)
(Originally called "Les cloches de Corneville (The Bells of Corneville)"
Written by Robert Planquette
Small section played on violin by William K.L. Dickson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The first experiment with sound...

It was on a day in 1891 when Scottish inventor William K.L. Dickson surprised his boss, Thomas Alva Edison with his remarkable work in the development of motion pictures. After many experiments, Dickson was now able to capture scenes of real life with his camera, and reproduce them through his invention, the Kinetoscope, as if a fragment of time were preserved in celluloid. Soon, Dickson's Kinetoscope would become an enormous success as a new way of entertainment, with many people eager to pay the nickel that was charged to be able to watch people dancing, or acrobats performing stunts through the "peepshow" of the Kinetoscope. However, the invention wasn't complete, in order for it to capture on film the real life as we know it, sound was needed on the movies. So Dickson kept experimenting and this short experiment, Kinetophone's first film, was the result.

In this experiment, codenamed simply as "Dickson Experimental Sound Film", director William K.L. Dickson stands in front of a recording cone for a wax cylinder (earliest method of recording sound), with his violin on hands, playing a song named "Song of the Cabin Boy". The idea was to record the song into the cylinder at the same time that the camera was recording his movements. In order to show that this was a motion picture, two of Edison's "Black Maria" laboratory decided to do a little dance in front of the camera. Unlike what author Vito Russo claimed in his book, "The Celluloid Closet", this little dance had nothing to do with homosexuality as it obviously is a reference to the environment of loneliness of the lab, akin to the lonely sailors to whom the "Song of the Cabin Boy" was dedicated to (the title Russo suggests, "The Gay Brothers", is actually anachronistic as "gay" had no homosexual connotation in the late 1890s).

Sadly, Dickson was unable to achieve the desired effect, and the Kinetophone never could really produce the synchronized audio with images. While he had the cylinder with the sound and the celluloid with the images, the synchronization of the two elements was not exactly effective, and the sudden appearance of Auguste and Louis Lumière's Cinématographe prompted Edison's team to focus on projecting systems and eventually Dickson left the company. Fortunately, in 1998 Dickson's cylinder with the movie's sound was rebuilt and film editor Walter Murch made a restoration of the experiment as it was intended. Finally, "Dickson Experimental Sound Film" could be heard with synchronized sound, just as its creative inventor had intended. While it was not a successful attempt, this outstanding film is a testament of the enormous genius of the father of Kinetoscope. 8/10


4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
First sound Movie?? ky_2k
Discuss Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page