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Fahrenheit 451 [DVD] [1966]

Oskar Werner , Julie Christie , François Truffaut    Suitable for 12 years and over   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
Price: £5.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Fahrenheit 451 [DVD] [1966] + 1984 [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Oskar Werner, Julie Christie, Cyril Cusack, Anton Diffring, Jeremy Spenser
  • Directors: François Truffaut
  • Writers: François Truffaut, David Rudkin, Helen Scott, Jean-Louis Richard, Ray Bradbury
  • Producers: Jane C. Nusbaum, Lewis M. Allen
  • Format: Colour, PAL, Anamorphic, Widescreen, Mono
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, German
  • Dubbed: French, German
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Audio Description: None
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Universal Pictures UK
  • DVD Release Date: 10 Nov 2003
  • Run Time: 108 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000DCXS3
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 22,590 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



The classic science fiction novel by Ray Bradbury was a curious choice for one of the leading directors of the French New Wave, François Truffaut. But from the opening credits onward (spoken, not written on screen), Truffaut takes Bradbury's fascinating premise and makes it his own. The futuristic society depicted in Fahrenheit 451 is a culture without books. Firemen still race around in red trucks and wear helmets, but their job is to start fires: they ferret out forbidden stashes of books, douse them with petrol and make public bonfires. Oskar Werner, the star of Truffaut's Jules and Jim, plays a fireman named Montag, whose exposure to David Copperfield wakens an instinct towards reading and individual thought. (That's why books are banned--they give people too many ideas.) In an intriguing casting flourish, Julie Christie plays two roles: Montag's bored, drugged-up wife and the woman who helps kindle the spark of rebellion. The great Bernard Herrmann wrote the hard-driving music; Nicolas Roeg provided the cinematography. Fahrenheit 451 received a cool critical reception and has never quite been accepted by Truffaut fans or sci-fi buffs. Its deliberately listless manner has always been a problem, although that is part of its point; the lack of reading has made people dry and empty. If the movie is a bit stiff (Truffaut did not speak English well and never tried another project in English), it nevertheless is full of intriguing touches, and the ending is lyrical and haunting. --Robert Horton,

Product Description

UK Universal Region 2 PAL, released in 2003. Bonus features: The Novel (A Discussion with author Ray Bradbury), Making of 'Fahrenheit 451', Feature Commentary with Julie Christie, The Music of 'Fahrenheit 451', The Original Title Sequence of Feature, Production Photographs. From back cover: "Ray Bradbury's best-selling science fiction masterpiece about a future without books takes on a chillingly realistic dimension in this film classic directed by one of the most important screen innovators of all time, the late Francois Truffaut. Julie Christie stars in the challenging dual role of Oskar Werner's pleasure-seeking wife, Linda, and his book-collecting mistress, Clarisse. Montag (Oskar Werner), a regimented fireman in charge of burning the forbidden volumes, meets a revolutionary school teacher who dares to read. Suddenly he finds himself a hunted fugitive, forced to choose not only between two women, but between personal safety and intellectual freedom. Truffaut's first English language production is an eerie fable where mankind becomes the ultimate evil."

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film about a bleak future 14 April 2005
Oskar Werner stars as Montag, an unhappy man living in a monotonous futuristic society. Books are illegal, spy screens are on every wall, emotions are out, and people take drugs to endure their dull lives. Montag is a fireman whose job it is to find hidden books, burn them, and arrest the owners. One day he becomes curious about these books and sneaks a copy of David Copperfield home. His spaced-out wife (Julie Christie) reports him to the authorities and he must run for his life. He runs to a kindred spirt (also played by Christie) who is a book-lover.
Oskar Werner is wonderful as the sensitive, confused fireman who longs to really connect with people, ideas, and feelings. Christie shines as both the glamorous, bored housewife and the brave teacher who dares to read. The film's view of the future is frightening and sad, but the ending is hopeful and quite touching. Heartily recommended.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It did the job well. 4 Nov 2006
I left school in 1966, the year this film was released. I and a few schoolfriends went to see it one Friday night. We left the cinema moved, and when we met on Monday we discovered we had all spent the entire weekend reading. The film had jolted us out of complacency, because we realised that the truth of books being valuable conveyors of ideas had been forgotten, so we were reading while we had the chance. Forty years later, ideas are still under threat: see the film, then read books while you can.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film to come back to 22 April 2006
I very much enjoyed watching this film, I am reading the book now and so far the director's interpretation and vision of the Ray Bradbury's book is remarkable. Truffault obviously shows us what he sees and even the author of the book was quite pleased with the result and mentioned, in a personal interview, that he has watched the movie at least 20 times and he is always touched by it.

Ray Bradbury shares with us his most terrible fear, what it would happen if libraries and books were illegal and burnt. He expresses that as a self-educated, the only idea of burning books was unimaginable and this really touches a very sensitive point in his heart. In the interview Bradbury mentiones that as self-taught he used to study in libraries and never made it to college.

The director's choice of the music background couldnt be better, having Bernard Herrmann as a composer for the film made this film to reach the level of Psycho and The birds, in a different theme (or subject) of course. Bernard Herrmann has accompanied Hitchcock's best films, without mentioning The citizen Kaine by Orson Wells.

During the film I found myself trying the guess the end and thankfully I was nicely surprised. This has no comparison with today's films in which you see what you expect. Due to the time in which the film was made, the director does not rely on special effects to give us a very special gift to be remembered.

Finally, it is a good way to reflect on what we take for granted (books, feeling, freedom of thought) and how the government can use the media to manipulate people's lives.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Abstract, hilarious and beautifull 24 Jan 2001
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
When I watched this movie, I really had a lot of trouble hanging on, because it starts so weird. It all gets clearer piece by piece and at that moment you're really hypnotized untill the end. I liked the thought that it gives you afterwards. It's really worth watching it. For old times sake and for the future. Especially considering how the world looks now. It is allmost as abstract as the reality in the movie. I'm actually going buy it now.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flowers of Fire 6 Jan 2006
By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAME TOP 100 REVIEWER
It's curious that a director who spent so much of his early career railing against the tyranny of the literary tradition in French cinema should spend so much of his career either adapting novels or filling his films with techniques from and references to literature at every turn, so his attraction to Ray Bradbury's fable isn't that surprising. What is surprising is that in many ways it's his most purely cinematic film, discarding his usual over-reliance on voice-over to carry underwritten scenes for more purely cinematic forms of interpretation. Even the readings from the forbidden books are kept to a minimum: the obsession is in Montag's behavior, not the words he speaks.

Truffaut's playfulness is all over the material, from casting an actor who forbade his children to watch TV or go to the cinema as the fire chief (Cyril Cusack in the film's standout performance) to dramatically masking off half the screen and heightening the dramatic music for what turns out to be a less than dramatic moment in a search - and that's without the inclusion of Cahiers du Cinema among the burning books or mentioning Anton Diffring's brief moment in drag. But then this is an absurdist world, where firemen slide up poles and start fires and where fascism is accepted in that way it always is when gradually introduced because of people's innate ability to adapt to their circumstances, no matter how absurd or restricting.

It improves on Bradbury's novel by losing some of the more distancing sci-fi devices such as the fortune telling dog, and setting its future in a soulless post-war New Town environment that is close enough to the real look of the time to add to the credibility.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A Great Movie
Fahrenheit 451 is a science fiction film based on the 1953 novel by Ray Bradbury, set in a future where knowledge and independent thinking are decried, and firemen are literally... Read more
Published 1 month ago by TraceyH
5.0 out of 5 stars Burnt Again Reichian Book Burners
Stilted, bland...yes, but to some extent the acting mirrors the Aspergers world existing in another dimension; this is where the movie is set, a world within. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles
5.0 out of 5 stars The one case where the film is better than the book
This is, in my most humble opinion, the one case where the film is better than the book.
Don't read the book. Watch the film. Read more
Published 9 months ago by N. Guimaraes
5.0 out of 5 stars It is still up to date & accurate nowadays!
In this Goolge, Facebook & NSA era, this is still 'what could happen!' Scary but unavoidable.... Classic science fiction! Just Watch it!
Published 10 months ago by E.R. Beunders
5.0 out of 5 stars Fahrenheit 451
I bought this film for my husband who had raved about the book since reading it.
We really enjoyed watching the film.
Published 11 months ago by Mrs. K. A. Gurnett
5.0 out of 5 stars On my Top Ten All Time Favorite Movies List
This is simply one of the greatest movies I've ever seen, a rare case of the movie being superior to the novel by Ray Bradbury in my opinion. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Aurelia Havisham
5.0 out of 5 stars DVD
The DVD arrived within a few days of ordering, was well packaged and was exactly as described by the vendor. Excellent service.
Published 23 months ago by J. Gower
5.0 out of 5 stars Manuscripts don't burn?
For some reason, I missed this film despite years of student film clubs and art house cinema visits and saw it for the first time, by chance, dubbed on German TV. Read more
Published on 18 May 2012 by Secret Spi
5.0 out of 5 stars Fahrenheit 451 dvd
I was pleased with item when l received it. But have not watched it yet as it is birthday present for my husband. Lynda.
Published on 16 April 2012 by Mrs. Lynda Monday
2.0 out of 5 stars Fails to catch fire...
Fahrenheit 451 is a curiously flat and uninvolving affair despite the promising source material of Ray Bradbury's classic sci-fi novel where in a future society reading is banned... Read more
Published on 9 April 2012 by rj groves
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