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Sound designers/editors/mixers didn’t always have all of the fancy and (VERY) precise tools that let us get as in depth as we do today, but there are still many films that hold up incredibly well…especially when you consider those that really used sound effectively as a story-telling element. There’s a lot we can learn from them though. Working within restrictions is such a big part of creativity (both as a source of inspiration and a challenge).

So what are some of your favorite classic films that got sound right. The older the better. Some of mine:

  • Fritz Lang’s M (1931)
  • Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane (1941)
  • Robert Bresson’s A Man Escaped (1956 – thank you Criterion, for finally bringing this to the U.S.!…original title – Un condamné à mort s’est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut)
  • Francis Ford Coppola’s The Conversation (1974)