MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 39,765 this week

Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894)

 -  Short
6.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 991 users  
Reviews: 18 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...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

Fall TV Premiere Week

Many of your favorite shows are coming back, along with plenty of series premieres. Here's a list of the shows premiering between Sunday, September 21 and Friday, September 26.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 147 titles
created 19 Jul 2011
 
list image
a list of 25 titles
created 12 Sep 2011
 
a list of 600 titles
created 07 Apr 2012
 
list image
a list of 145 titles
created 7 months ago
 
list image
a list of 905 titles
created 7 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894)

Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894) on IMDb 6.9/10

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... 

Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Annabelle (Whitford) Moore performs one of her popular dance routines. She uses her dance steps and her long, flowing skirts to create a variety of visual patterns.

Directors: William K.L. Dickson, William Heise
Stars: Annabelle Moore
Short | Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A humorous subject intended to be run as a part of a railroad scene during the period in which the train is passing through a tunnel.

Director: George Albert Smith
Stars: Laura Bayley, George Albert Smith
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

One of the greatest of black art pictures. The conjurer appears before the audience, with his head in its proper place. He then removes his head, and throwing it in the air, it appears on ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Short | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Porter's sequential continuity editing links several shots to form a narrative of firemen responding to a house fire. They leave the station with their horse drawn pumper, arrive on the ... See full summary »

Directors: George S. Fleming, Edwin S. Porter
Stars: Vivian Vaughan, Arthur White, James H. White
Animation | Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

One night, Arlequin come to see his lover Colombine. But then Pierrot knocks at the door and Colombine and Arlequin hide. Pierrot starts singing but Arlequin scares him and the poor man goes away.

Director: Émile Reynaud
Buffalo Dance (1894)
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Three Sioux Indians perform a 'buffalo dance', while two others use drums to supply a rhythm. The three dancers move around in a circle as they perform the various actions that are part of the dance.

Director: William K.L. Dickson
Stars: Hair Coat, Parts His Hair, Last Horse
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

"King of the slack wire. His daring feats of balancing as he performs his thrilling feats in midair show that he is perfectly at home." (from Edison Films)

Director: William K.L. Dickson
Stars: Juan A. Caicedo
Animation | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
Director: Émile Reynaud
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
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A stationary camera looks across the boulevard at a diagonal toward one corner of Lyon's Cordeliers' Square. It's a long shot, with a great deal of depth of focus. We can see the sky and ... See full summary »

Director: Louis Lumière
The Sea (1895)
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Several little boys run along a pier, then jump into the ocean.

Director: Louis Lumière
Trick Riding (1895)
Documentary | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

In the background is a house. In the foreground, a groom holds the reins of a sleek black horse that stands in profile. A tall man, dressed in a black uniform, demonstrates how to mount the... See full summary »

Director: Louis Lumière
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 Hollywood (1980) 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
Best movie ever! amaklp
Discuss Dickson Experimental Sound Film (1894) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page