VR Replaces Books In New Version Of Fahrenheit 451

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VR Replaces Books In New Version Of Fahrenheit 451
February 28, 2018

With rising star Michael B. Jordan (currently being badass in Black Panther) as the hero, HBO's adaptation of Ray Bradbury's classic seems savvily updated to today, squarely implicating virtual reality (about 35 second in) as a key part of this dystopia that's waging war, as the villainous Beatty declares, against "News, facts, memoirs, Internet of old.. burn it!"

 

Often misinterpreted as mainly being about government censorship, it's really Bradbury's response to the rise of non-literary mass media, and its suffocating power, written many decades before smartphones and bedding Taylor Swift in the Oculus Rift.

 

As he put in an interview some 60 years ago: "In writing the short novel Fahrenheit 451, I thought I was describing a world that might evolve in four or five decades. But only a few weeks ago, in Beverly Hills one night, a husband and wife passed me, walking their dog. I stood staring after them, absolutely stunned. The woman held in one hand a small cigarette-package-sized radio, its antenna quivering. From this sprang tiny copper wires which ended in a dainty cone plugged into her right ear. There she was, oblivious to man and dog, listening to far winds and whispers and soap-opera cries, sleep-walking, helped up and down curbs by a husband who might just as well not have been there. This was not fiction."

 

Then again, maybe it's better Bradbury passed away in 2012, rather than witness the looming dystopia we're dealing with today.

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