Fahrenheit 451 - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Fahrenheit 451 Reviews

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½ February 5, 2017
Very under-rated adaptation of the Ray Bradbury novel.
½ February 2, 2017
Review In A Nutshell:

Fahrenheit 451 follows the story of a world where books are forbidden by law and firefighters are present to ensure they are perished via fire, and one firefighter starts to have second thoughts about his profession.

The first thing came into my mind when watching this film is the similarities this film has with A Clockwork Orange and Brazil, the similarities is found in its visual atmosphere, creating this dystopian environment, but what makes this film different from the two films I mentioned is its dystopia is found internally within its characters. The physical environment that these characters live in are actually close to home, aside from a couple of "improvements" like the wall screen. Truffaut immerses the audience in the environment and he does this by not letting the set and costume designs overwhelm the frame. It was also clever of Truffaut to not spend too much time on exploring the world and keep the film's attention towards the characters and their story.

The story of Fahrenheit 451 is driven by its message of valuing literature and the need for humans to express individualism in order for life to be fulfilling. The antagonists in this film believe that life should be equal for all and painful emotions should be repressed by society as it proves no purpose in progressing mankind forward. I may not be a book enthusiast as I personally feel that it affects my experience of enjoying a film, but I do value its existence and the impact it has had on so many people. Before cinema, television and theatre productions there were literature to escape us from our lives and allow us to learn new things that would shape our intellectual and emotional values. The government is not seen and is barely touched on in this film but Truffaut lets us feel their presence through Television programs, ensuring they are controlled and keeping rebellious act at bay.

The human story in this film is primarily driven to push the film's message but thankfully, it was still able to deliver a strong and entertaining tale delivered through its empathetic and accessible protagonist. There isn't much to Montag that isn't already expressed on the surface but it didn't matter to me as the journey he goes through intellectually and emotionally was fascinating. I did have some issues with certain fragments of the story, mainly the scenes with Clarisse and the school she worked in, as those scenes slowed down the story and lacked a strong pay-off.

The score in this film, by Bernard Herrmann, is certainly far from his best work but it does do a good enough job to amplify the film's messages and help shape the film's atmosphere and tone. My feelings towards Nicolas Roegâ??s photography were similar to Herrmann's score, it does a good job in keeping our attentions but it doesn't amount to anything memorable or spectacular.

The acting in this film was strong but nothing worth of high praise. Oskar Werner as our protagonist, Guy Montag, did a good job playing a man who is conflicted about his profession and has started a powerful relationship with literature. Julie Christie played two different roles in this film, giving each one a different flavour in order to have them distinguishable but the intensity she delivers on both is similar. Cyril Cusack as The Captain of Fahrenheit 451 was entertaining to watch, it was so fun to watch him spill out his personal values of literature and make them feel real; there were moments where I actually felt physical angered because of the despicable things he said.

Fahrenheit 451 is certainly one of the director's stronger efforts. After seeing this, it makes me feel guilty that I don't read enough, making me feel intellectually hollow.
½ January 4, 2017
A smart dystopian book adaptation that benefits greatly from a clever plot and great production design, but likely due to Francois Truffaut's difficulty with English, the acting is a stilted setback.
Super Reviewer
½ November 28, 2016
Transposed to the screen by Truffaut and with an evoking score by Bernard Herrmann, Bradbury's terrifying vision of a future is a brilliant allegory that remains intelligent and pertinent even today, when books may not be destroyed but are scorned by people.
November 13, 2016
Generally considered to be a failed adaptation of Bradbury's novel, I think it's better than it's reputation would suggest. It has problems. Truffaut did not speak English, and this seems to result is some awkwardness in the pacing. Truffaut and Werner apparently fought bitterly over his performance, Truffaut wanting a more conventionally emotional performance. I think he was right. Werner is too much of an enigma in this film, which leaves a big emotional hole at the center of the film. You want to follow him on his journey from book burner to reader and he doesn't really take you anywhere. A lot does work though. Julie Christie is magnificent in her dual roles. The production design is delightfully original. It's an oddly pastoral take on a clinical future. The score by Bernard Herrmann and cinematography by Nicolas Roeg are unsurprisingly wonderful. Minor Truffaut, but not a complete failure.
½ September 15, 2016
Layered and emotionally deep-seated, François Truffaut's FAHRENHEIT 451 has aged tremendously well. The only other film that came to mind while watching it was Coppola's THE CONVERSATION. Apart from that, it felt like nothing I had ever seen before.
½ April 24, 2016
A fairly unusual film right from the start, when the credits are read out instead of written on the screen. This is symbolic, of course. The film is about a few rebels living in a world where books are forbidden. Despite it's weird style and it's successful attempt to predict the future (in some ways), I still couldn't stay awake throughout this film after two attempts. I guess it's just not interesting enough.
April 16, 2016
This movie doesn't follow the book at all. But in '66 this was the best they could do, and during that time it was amazing, but I must admit I liked how they did the ending. So I won't be too harsh.
Super Reviewer
½ December 21, 2015
More like a jazz riff on the source material than a note by note translation, Traffaut's version actually adds interesting layers not intended by Bradbury. It's always cool to see how the past imagined the future and this imagination is well layered. For instance all the houses have TV antennas. Its a important feature of Traffaut's vision --- and its wrong technically. Nobody back then saw WIFI coming. On the other hand wall-sized flat screens are a right on the money prediction. On the whole the film is an uneven affair, and Werner's presence is disconcerting, yet as sci-fi it totally works. Its not just about burning books. Its about controlling the masses.
½ November 6, 2015
The Book, Rather Than This Visual re-Telling Is Far Better. I Guess This At Least, Ironically, Gives Those Who Prefer Visual Media Over The Written Word To Be Shown These Ideals Of Thought, Free-Thinking & Discovery Through Knowledge As Portrayed By Bradbury In His Dystopian Future. Bradbury Saw Books As Being Lost Due To Futuristic Gadgetry & Screens, Distracting Us...This Does Not Do His Books Or Ideas Justice, But Ironically Shows Why Books Are Better...So If You Can Read, Go Get a The Zbook!!
August 14, 2015
Less Sci-Fi and more a sort of abstraction of Bradbury's ideas. This was Truffaut's first English-speaking film and the first he shot in color. It seems as if something might have been lost in translation. But nothing is lost with Julie Christie's presence and the fantastic cinematography of Nicolas Roeg. Worth a look.
½ June 30, 2015
I really wanted to enjoy this movie because I enjoyed the novel, but while the underlying message is still there all elements of sci-fi and suspense are thrown out the window replaced with laughably awkward and cheesy scenes such as with Mildred and the television and every scene with the woman who is burned in her house. Awkward, sloppy, and dissapointing... but a laugh if your into that.
June 3, 2015
This movie was way off of the book. I hated it. Don't watch it.
April 29, 2015
Uma sociedade em que os bombeiros queimam livros para manter a população desinformada.
January 26, 2015
Read the book it is the masterpiece that the film is not!
January 21, 2015
"Fahrenheit 451" fue la única película en inglés y la única película de ciencia ficción dirigida por Truffaut. Esta adaptación de la novela de Ray Bradbury nos muestra cómo en un futuro cercano los libros serán prohibidos y quemados por los bomberos. Montag (Oskar Werner) es uno de esos bomberos que duda de su oficio y Julie Christie interpreta tanto a su ligera esposa Linda como a la rebelde Clarisse. Lo doloroso de esta película es que actualmente ya no se necesitan quemar los libros para que la gente no los lea.
January 9, 2015
To learn how to find, one must first learn how to hide.
December 28, 2014
Not Truffaut's best work, but that does not stop it from raising the actual point. Films are not just for artistic worshiping, but how artistically they serve the social cause, explore the human attributes through multiple fictional creative work.
November 22, 2014
By far one of the most (unintentionally?) hilarious sci-fi's I have ever seen in my life, ever.
Where do I begin? The awkward dialogue, the shots the just linger waay too long to the point of absurdity, scenes filmed in reverse and played in both ways, random slow motion, the strange cuts and transitions, precisely two random acts of screen-blacking to force attention, the spaced-out characters, hiding books in a toaster, that TV programme that so creepily stops to ask the viewer how to procceed, the dude's wifes amorous "Haaaa~" bit, flying policemen, and the firemans pole that goes UP somehow as well as down, also that same pole seems to reject the protagonist going up later in the film, as if it has a concious understanding of his recent activities while the rest of the force is oblivious (they should just have these poles everywhere, test people on it and then they would know who's been reading books or not). Also, later, he can't even slide down the pole, I guess it would just stop physics and he would just float there, so instead he opts for the stairs.
On top of all this hilarity, there is an interesting allegorical concept .

4/5 Would laugh again.
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