Tales of the Unexpected: Season 4, Episode 7

The Sound Machine (17 May 1981)

TV Episode  |   |  Horror, Thriller
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During a sunny suburban summer before the Second World War Mr. Klausner develops a box which amplifies the tiniest sound and, for example, records the screams of flowers as they are being ... See full summary »



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Episode complete credited cast:
James Warwick ...
Dr. Scott
Margery Mason ...
Mrs. Saunders


During a sunny suburban summer before the Second World War Mr. Klausner develops a box which amplifies the tiniest sound and, for example, records the screams of flowers as they are being cut. His next-door neighbour is less impressed by his invention. Likewise the doctor who regards Mr. Klausner as a case for treatment. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Horror | Thriller




Release Date:

17 May 1981 (UK)  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Version of CBS Television Workshop: The Sound Machine (1952) See more »


All Things Bright and Beautiful
Music by William H. Monk
Lyrics by Cecil F. Alexander
Performed by Harry Andrews
See more »

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User Reviews

Average tale of the unexpected.

Tales of the Unexpected: The Sound Machine is set during 'Summer 1935' where a eccentric old man named Klausner (Harry Andrews) has invented a machine which is able to detect extremely high pitched sounds up. The first time he tries it out he sets it up in his garden where nearby he sees his neighbour Mr's Saunders (Margery Mason) cutting some roses, wearing headphones Klausner hears a horrible high pitched shrieking noise which he quickly releases are the screams of pain from the roses that are being cut...

This Tales of the Unexpected story was episode 7 from season 4 that originally aired here in the UK during May 1981, the fourth of eleven Tales of the Unexpected episodes to be directed by John Gorrie this has a decent set up but criminally & somewhat surprisingly does absolutely nothing with it. The story by Roald Dahl was dramatised by Ronald Harwood & has a light hearted fantasy feel about, I wouldn't call it horror exactly but neither is it based in reality or have anything to do with crime. Unfortunately while the basic premise is alright of a machine that detects the sounds made by plants absolutely nothing is made of it & the episode disappointing fizzles out into not very much & a weak ending which I would even called a twist where Klausner gets carted off to an insane asylum, deeply uninspired stuff & a very dull way to round things off. At 30 odd minutes it's worth a watch I suppose but the none event of an ending left me distinctly unimpressed.

This one has a nice period setting & looks pretty polished, unfortunately not that much really happens in it & I found it a bit dull & forgettable. The acting was OK from the usual strong British cast.

The Sound Machine is average at best that really suffers because it does nothing with it's story & there's just no twist here whatsoever, maybe one for the fans of the series.

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