By Jack (California)
This wasn’t Fahrenheit 451. What I mean by that is the story of this film is so different from the book that it was based on. Of course, there always will be changes when adapting a book to a movie format – and sometimes it works out for the better. I never get mad when they change parts of the story when adapting it to a movie – unless the spirit, theme or message is completely different from the book. Therefore, I say then that this adaptation has failed. There are many components from the book that are missing the really bring down the quality of the movie. And even if I didn’t read the book, I’m sure I’d find this film to be fairly mediocre.
The acting first of all was pretty decent. The opening credits to this movie were great. I just had this very unsettling feeling as I watched it, as for a lot of the movie as well – which is a good thing as that is the tone of the book. The futuristic city in which the characters lived in was pretty cool. It was similar to other movie’s futuristic worlds but is different enough that it isn’t an exact copy. There are some genuinely tense scenes that I liked. The movie looked pretty great also. The story did have me hooked for a long time up until around the second-third.
However, a lot of it was just plain boring and didn’t get me at all invested. Many of the characters, such as Clarisse, are pretty bland. And in the case of Clarisse, I don’t feel that was enough telling you exactly what she does and why. I was asking myself “who is this person?” Plus, the actress wasn’t so great. There was also this really dumb part with some bird disease that only had me confused.
The major changes they made also had me scratching my head. Now there will be spoilers in this paragraph, so if you don’t want any story elements spoiled just skip to the next paragraph (spoilers for the book as well). The change that got me confused was how different Clarisse was from the book. In the book, she is a teenager who is considered crazy by other characters, but to us, the reader, she seems to be a completely normal human-being. In fact, she is sent to psychiatrist even though she doesn’t seem to have any problems. She’s the opposite of a conformist, unlike the others in the society in which this book takes place in. She does question things and is a thinker, again, unlike the rest in this society. Nothing like the character in the movie. In the book, she is an innocent and joyful person. Then in the film she is a serious and sad person and is a part of a sort of rebellion.
The theme of conformity in the movie is pretty weak, unlike the book where it is very strong. Montag, the main character, has a wife named Mildred who was cut from the film. This annoys me as she is a key component of the theme of conformity, which was one of the most fascinating parts of the book. It is there in the movie, but again, isn’t looked that much into. The theme of the dangers of technology isn’t exactly there either. It is a bit, but there is never emphasis on it like in the book. And honestly, the themes they do take from the book are also pretty weak I think. There are other changes that are little strange also. Such as when Montag kills that guy with a flame-thrower at his house instead of Captain Beatty, which was a big moment for the character in the book. As I said, I know there will be changes when adapting a movie. But I do feel that had they not made some of the changes they did, then this movie could’ve been a lot better.
Overall I’d say this movie pretty mediocre. There’s nothing terrible in it, but it could have much, much better.