5.9/10
445
6 user 1 critic

The Magic Lantern (1903)

La lanterne magique (original title)
| Short, Comedy, Fantasy
In this brief "trick film" two clowns assemble an enormous magic lantern which first projects moving images, then emits dancing girls.

Director:

Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A woman disappears on stage.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Jeanne d'Alcy, 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
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 | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

In a public place in Constantinople at the corner of a bazaar, the executioner is seated upon a stone and is resting from his daily labors while eating a crust of bread. Suddenly there come... See full summary »

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Faust in Hell (1903)
Short | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Scenes. 1. The Route to the Depths of Perdition (a Dazzingly Sensational New Effect.) 2. The Fantastical Ride. 3. The Gloomy Pass. 4. The Stream. 5. The Entrance to the Lower Regions. 6. ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Short | Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The leader of a marching band demonstrates an unusual way of writing music.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Short | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

At the royal court, a prince is presenting the princess whom he is pledged to marry, when a witch suddenly appears. Though driven off, the witch soon returns, summons some of her servants, ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Bleuette Bernon, Georges Méliès
Frankenstein (1910)
Short | Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Frankenstein, a young medical student, trying to create the perfect human being, instead creates a misshapen monster. Made ill by what he has done, Frankenstein is comforted by his fiancée ... See full summary »

Director: J. Searle Dawley
Stars: Mary Fuller, Charles Ogle, Augustus Phillips
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 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 | Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An astronomer falls asleep and has a strange dream involving a fairy queen and the Moon.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Short | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A gang of thieves lure a man out of his home so that they can rob it and threaten his wife and children. The family barricade themselves in an interior room, but the criminals are ... See full summary »

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: David Miles, Marion Leonard, Mary Pickford
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A chemist carries out a bizarre experiment with his own head.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Edit

Storyline

Two impish clowns construct a magic lantern. They prop it up at an angle, and use it to project pictures onto a wall. When the picture show ends, they open up the lantern to reveal a group of dancing girls inside - and this is only the first of the indications that this lantern really is magical. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Comedy | Fantasy

Edit

Details

Country:

Also Known As:

The Magic Lantern  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

More Melies Magic
6 December 2008 | by (www.2020-movie-reviews.com) – See all my reviews

This might be a film from the early days of cinema but Melies was already a seasoned practitioner of the infant art back in 1903 and it shows in this relatively sophisticated special effects short. The premise is simply - as all films were back then: two clown dolls create a magic lantern in a child's bedroom and project moving images onto a bedroom wall before revealing a small army of dancing girls concealed in the lantern. The film begins to resemble a variety show at this point before culminating in a fairly surreal sequence featuring an abnormally tall figure taunting the police who arrived to break up the clowns who began fighting over the affections of one of the dancing girls. The film is quite amusing, but even at less than five minutes it seems a little overlong.


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The Magic Lantern (1903) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page