Sound in film is communication with the help of sound. The most important mechanisms of tonal effect can be traced back to specific characteristics of perception and to the contextualization of the sound in the film: sounds are predominantly perceived as 'things', as objects in space. Familiar and foreign worlds can be told by playing with 'thingness': what is audible does not have to be visible; ambivalent thingness can convey strangeness or horror. The cross-modal correspondences of perception and the associated linguistic metaphors allow every sound object to potentially become a carrier of meaning. Cross-modal metaphors such as brightness, height, sharpness, weight of the sound can communicate the materiality of filmic objects, physical states such as pain or abstract concepts such as the abyss of the soul. The room also becomes the object of the design through sound, much more differentiated than is possible with the image alone. Sound can create space - explicitly through objects spanning a physical space, implicitly through simulated throwbacks from boundary surfaces that we perceive as architectural space, metaphorically through the spatial cross-modal metaphors of height, depth, size. Spatial proximity creates emotional closeness, spatial distance or spatial separation communicates emotional distance. The essay deals with the fundamental mechanisms of tonal effects in film. The special focus is on the thingness of the sounds and cross-modal connections of perception, which are expressed in the metaphorical properties of the sound objects, and on the design with the physical and metaphorical space. The archetypal symbolism of certain sounds is briefly mentioned. Finally, the creation of ›atmosphere‹ through sound is explained using some case studies.