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Thread: Fahrenheit 451

  1. #21
    Senior Member Country: England cornershop15's Avatar
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    For some reason, I like the images more than the film (does this mean I'll be screencapping it for you? Not just yet). I wonder if it's because it's Science-Fiction, which I'm not always keen on? I thought Oskar was very good in this too, perhaps better than both Julie Christie's performances put together, although I think she succeeded in making her blonde character sympathetic.



    The moment where a young man wraps his arms around himself always reminds me of Charles Aznavour singing Dance In The Old-Fashioned Way as that's what he used to do when he performed the song. Charles appeared in Truffaut's Shoot The Pianist. An interesting connection there.

  2. #22
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    It's hard to take the premise of Truffauts's film seriously, especially the end in the snow - I mean, how many people do you know that would memorise a book in the obsessive way the wandering peoples do? And what's important anyway? One's own narratives or those of 'famous' authors?



    Makes you wonder whose lives are the more impoverished, although Truffaut would have you believe it's those who can't recite verbatim the works of famous authors.

  3. #23
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    Notoriously despite after the success of Jules Et Jim earlier, Werner and Truffaut didn't get along on the set of Farenheit 451 and in the end they communicated via a third party. They never worked or spoke to each other ever after.



    For a director usually regarded in the same breath as Renoir, I thought Truffaut was really nasty to include Oskar's portrait in his altar of the dead as featured in his 1978 movie La Chambre Verte - after all, Werner was still alive!

  4. #24
    Senior Member Country: England cornershop15's Avatar
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    Notoriously despite after the success of Jules Et Jim earlier, Werner and Truffaut didn't get along on the set of Farenheit 451 and in the end they communicated via a third party. They never worked or spoke to each other ever after.



    For a director usually regarded in the same breath as Renoir, I thought Truffaut was really nasty to include Oskar's portrait in his altar of the dead as featured in his 1978 movie La Chambre Verte - after all, Werner was still alive!
    In case you didn't know already, they both died within 48 hours of each other. Francois Truffaut died 21st October 1984, and Oskar Werner the 23rd. Astonishing. Perhaps they patched things up when they reached t'other side! Incidentally, this film was shown at the Gate Bloomsbury Cinema the day after Truffaut's death, and broke down 3/4 of the way through (it was my first viewing as well). Oskar was still alive at this point.



    I knew about this falling-out - from the DVD featurette, come to think of it - and, as you may have gathered from my latest subject 'Actors Creating Magic ...', am unhappy they didn't get along. A great shame.

  5. #25
    Senior Member Country: Vatican Sgt Sunshine's Avatar
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    Even if they do, the production companies are scared of new ideas and won't let people make films based on new ideas. The money men look at an old film and see that it was successful in the past. So they know that if they throw enough money at promoting a remake then it'll make a profit even if it's not as good as the original. It worked for The Italian Job, The Ladykillers and many others.



    You have to bear in mind that there's very little artistic consideration in the decision to make a new film. Any artistic consideration that does sneak into the calculation is outweighed by the huge financial consideration which is what really drives the film industry.



    That might sound like a cynical view, but can anyone prove me wrong?



    Steve
    Steve, I understand and agree that what your saying is probably true, although I think its sad that money over-rules everything else......

    Its a sad state of affairs when new ideas and scripts etc are shunned in favour of re-hashing old classics

    In the end they may well "shoot themselves in the foot" as who will want to go see the umpteenth re-make of this... or Spiderman 18 or Shrek 12??

    Is this the death knell of cinema as we know it

    As for "Fahrenheit 451" would this qualify as you mentioned in your post "successful in the past"? Was it a big hit in 1966? Or maybe todays present climate makes a remake more viable??

    I love the book and film (with Julie Christie) and don't think it can be bettered.

    I wonder what Mr Bradbury thinks

    Sgt S

  6. #26
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    As for "Fahrenheit 451" would this qualify as you mentioned in your post "successful in the past"? Was it a big hit in 1966? Or maybe todays present climate makes a remake more viable??

    I love the book and film (with Julie Christie) and don't think it can be bettered.

    I wonder what Mr Bradbury thinks

    Sgt S
    I think you've just answered your own question about it being successful in the past. You liked it, lots of other people liked it as well. I don't know if it was a big hit in 1966. I think it did reasonable business



    Steve

  7. #27
    Senior Member Country: United States torinfan's Avatar
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    Back to Fahrenheit 451, I love the photography mostly. There are many striking moments, not least the surprisingly emotional ending (which is a bit far-fetched!), Bee Duffell defiantly sacrificing her life as she can't live without her books, Anton Diffring dressed up as a woman (!), and those extraordinary images of the pages turning during the inferno. Strangely, as a book-lover myself, I found the sight of that blue stuff being squirted on them more upsetting than the almost beautiful look of the fire.



    A nice publicity picture of the main stars, Oskar Werner and Julie Christie.







    I love the artistic quality of Fahrenheit 451 too, something I do not frequently see in sci-fi films.

  8. #28
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    Could never better the original, brilliant film

  9. #29
    Senior Member Country: England cornershop15's Avatar
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    I originally posted these captures at the 'Watched Last Night' thread in response to Sgt. Sunshine's feeling that Mark Lester appeared as a schholboy. Indeed he did ...



    Was Mark's character unable to speak for a reason or was he just painfully shy? Either way, he kept running away whenever Julie Christie tried to talk to him, something that caused her great distress (overacting at it's worst, folks)!



    I've always found Anton Diffring an intimidating actor, notably in Circus Of Horrors, but he provided us with this surprising moment in Fahrenheit 451:





    I thought he was supposed to be a cross-dresser in this but IMDB credits him as having a dual role - Fabian/The Headmistress. Years later, Anton had a brief role as a commentator in the Pro-Celebrity Football/War movie Escape To Victory and that was weird viewing too (or rather listening). Wasn't his distinctive German accent replaced by a Posh English one?



    It's now a month since I posted these captures at 'Watched Last Night'. Sorry it took so long to bring them here. I've now done half of what I promised, but still haven't looked for the scenes where Donald Pickering and Ann Bell appear. I've got to know these actors very well (on screen of course) since my last viewing of the film, years ago, so I look forward to finding - and capping - them on my DVD for a future post.

  10. #30
    Senior Member Country: England cornershop15's Avatar
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    I had a feeling I remembered Donald's role, as a 'TV Announcer' (uncredited!), in the film and was proved right. He has a bizarre conversation with another announcer before turning to Julie Christie, who is at home with husband Oskar Werner, and hesitatntly answers their computerised questions. The other man was played by an actor named Noel Davis:





    Where have we seen them before?

    As I pointed out at the 'Lookalikes' thread, Donald bears a strong resemblance to Brian Dowling! Seeing these two characters, then doing my usual IMDB research of their screen careers, has inspired another actor-related thread!

    This time it's in connection with other appearances which I'd have no way of knowing that they'd made. I'll try and explain what I mean tomorrow, when I will include the capture of Ann Bell I alluded to. In the meantime, here are Donald and Noel in two other roles I've seen them in:



    Donald Pickering in The Champions - The Fanatics and Noel Davis in Randall and Hopkirk - All Work and No Pay



    You'd never guess they were a couple of Northerners! Noel will be my first subject at the new thread.

  11. #31
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    Amazing film, we watched it again the other night and it never becomes tiring to watch.



    The music, the strange way the people behave and the rebellious nature building up in the lead character are fantastic.



    Julie Christie is awesome in both parts and yes who'd have thought that one day people would have large flat widescreen TV's on their living room walls.



    Far fetched or what?




  12. #32
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    This is probably my favourite all time film. But I have to say, that even though I saw the film first, I did prefer the book.

    I remember wanting to get a copy of this on VHS (before internet/amazon days), and after waiting for several years, it was to be shown on TV. I sat there on the floor ready to tape this film, and treasure it for ever. Just as the announcer said the film was on next, the video recorder died!. I spent the next three minutes desperately trying to get it going, but it just would not go.

    This saw me have a moment of video rage (a bit like road rage), where I proceeded to kick the VCR around the room, until it was totally smashed.



    Luckily, now, I have been the proud owner of a DVD of the film for a while, and watch it once or twice per year.

  13. #33
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    It's been a long time since I saw this film, but reliving some of its fine moments in my imagination as I've read this thread has really made me want to see it again.

  14. #34
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    Hi, i have only ever seen this film once, about 40 years ago when it was on TV. One scene has bizarrely stayed with me to this day. It's when two 'firemen' are summoned to the Head fireman's office, presumably they had done something wrong. It had an ambience of two schoolboys visiting the headmaster's study for punishment (well I was about 12 years old, so this is all i could associate it with!). The action in the office area seems to be speeded up and you could see sort of movement through frosted windows, where the head fireman comes around their side of the desk? Does this episode appear in the book? Can anyone suggest what was going on and why it was filmed in this intriguing/confusing way?

  15. #35
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    Haven't you seen it recently? It is available on DVD and it's fantastic.



    I'm not sure about the novel, but to me the firemen come across as quite inhuman and perhaps how things would be if Hitler and the Nazi's had won the war and taken over the UK?

  16. #36
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    Hi Taffy,



    I've just looked it up and its available for less than a fiver! The reviews are quite mixed i suppose it's a bit of a marmite film, you either love it or hate it. The last time i saw it i was probably about 12 so it will be interesting to see it again through the eyes of an adult.

  17. #37
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    I once had the honour of hosting Francois Truffaut on a trip to London - I adored his movies and he turned out to be a total delight and spoke far more English than he ever admitted publicly. In those days I gave NFT guests a choice of any hotel in London and it was usually the Connaught, the Savoy, sometimes Blakes. But Truffaut was adamant that he stayed at the Hilton on Park Lane, that brutalist (or iconic) 60s skyscraper and not a hotel I'd ever consider. But Truffaut had stayed there for the entire shoot of Fahrenheit 451, he loved it and never stayed anywhere else in London. He wasn't 'worldly' in any sense and had a disdain for serious food, so I never saw him eat anything but hamburgers.

  18. #38
    Senior Member Country: England phil's Avatar
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    Probably not Steve, I like it though non fans of Cinema may find it boring, but not we fans I know!

    I'm hoping to get down to Crowthorne sometime during the year and walk up and down the street and take a few pics where Montag's bungalow is, I'm fitting in the oversized Wellington memorial at Aldershot and Guildford cathedral again, it's all planned.

    Glad to see it's available for under a fiver, time to get it on DVD methinks, though it's unfortunate Oskar Werner and Truffaut had a clash of personalities during the film, that's ego's for you I guess.
    Until you can get to Crowthorne Mark to look for Montag's house, the latest google street view shows Edgecombe Park and the surrounding roads at their best. Rhodes and Azaleas are in full bloom etc. It' s a lovely area, you need money to live there though, no front hedges allowed or washing out the front I believe.

    OR BOOKS?

  19. #39
    johnausten
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    From Ray Bradbury's novel about totalitarian society that has banned books and printed words in order to eliminate independent thought; Oskar Werner plays professional book-burner who becomes enraptured with stories. Possibly a bit too thin at this length, but a fascinating peek at a cold future (which the times have just about caught up to).

  20. #40
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    Does anybody remember the brief scene early in the film where a fireman rolls out his hose, then the film is briefly put into reverse? I noticed it straightaway and am not sure why they did that.

    As I understand it, Truffaut felt his film was an artistic failure (how wrong he was), hence his refusal to allow it to be DVD'd in his lifetime.

    Though I initially enjoyed Bradbury's book, I came to feel it was flawed. There is an anti-government rebel living out in the country who guides Montag's actions via a hidden earpiece. This comes across as very cumbersome, so I'm glad Truffaut recognised this and omitted it from the film. The ending is also weak - however lyrical it is, how are all these peace-loving idealistic booklovers going to prevail against a society with weapons?

    On the plus side, I always found the inversion of the role of the fire engine to be fascinating: not extinguishing fires (no need for that, as houses are flameproof in this future), but starting them. I'm sure Bradbury must have got his ideas from the public book-burnings ordered by Goebbels after the Nazis had gained power. And the sight of the fire engine whizzing along to Herrman's dramatic theme music is both stirring and disturbing, as in a bad dream.

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