Fahrenheit 451: Ramin Bahrani’s 2018 HBO Reboot

Ray Bradbury’s 1953 dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451 is set in a distant future where all books are verboten and troops of firemen keep the peace by burning literature.

Writer-director Ramin Bahrani’s 2018 HBO film rebooted this grim allegory with Michael B. Jordan cast as Guy Montag, a fireman who slowly begins to question the system, and Michael Shannon as the tough Captain Beatty, who struggles to keep the young Guy in line.

There is always the danger of not pleasing the book’s hardcore fans, especially if you are not entirely faithful to it.

Bahrani made several changes, such as setting his adaptation in an alternate version of the 2018 present, rather than Bradbury’s distant future. There are no flying cars, high-tech houses or other similar sci-fi tropes. There is, however, Yuxie, an omnipresent Alexa-like virtual assistant that monitors all.

“I really wanted a teenager to like this film,” Bahrani says. 
”I wanted it to have some of that energy and momentum and movement that matches at least my feelings as a kid, when you want things to move.”

Bahrani first pitched the idea 
of revisiting Bradbury’s story in a 2015 meeting with HBO. The timing seemed right: “As Bradbury had thought, 
we’re becoming addicted to screens that have mindless content, and I thought how easily this content could be controlled, manipulated, rewritten, erased. Things that 
he’d written in the novel seemed to be happening right now, or on the edge of happening in a new way.”