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date: 27 January 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter assesses the historical tendency within SF fandom and SF critical studies to treat SF film as necessarily inferior to prose SF. After indicating the cultural politics behind such judgments, and in criticism of SF film more broadly, it turns to the example of Fahrenheit 451 (1966), François Truffaut’s adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s 1953 novel. It untangles the contradictory criticisms of the film offered by champions of the novel, before outlining the ways in which the film not only adapts but also critiques the original text. Bould concludes the discussion with an examination of the role of special effects and kinesis in SF cinema, drawing on the Resident Evil franchise to demonstrate the critical—in both senses—role played by spectacle and affect.

Keywords: science fiction film, adaptation, spectacle, affect, special effects, Fahrenheit 451, Resident Evil

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