The Truman Show explores the theme of hypereality as the character Truman Burbank appears to live in the perfect neighbourhood until the viewer realises that it is in fact a fake tv set prison to keep Truman on tv twenty four hours a day. "You accept the world you're given, the filmmakers suggest; more thoughtful viewers will get the buried message, which is that we accept almost everything in our lives without examining it very closely." (Ebert, 2000) The audience excepts that the town and the lifestyle appears real but as the film progresses, it becomes evident that the world of tv show is far more exaggerated and as Truman Burbank studies the strangeness that occurs with events being on an ongoing loop and that the fellow cast members act suspicious, the audience also starts to question the fake world.
Figure 1, (2010), The hyper realistic town (world) all seems normal at first
The auidence in the film represent the viewers watching the film and their obession to escape to a better world that is a created fantasy. "Director Peter Weir creates "The Truman Show" as if you' re watching the show itself. Each camera angle, each iris shot pertains to a camera used in the Seahaven world. We're just as much the outside world to this movie as the outside world in "The Truman Show" is to the 24-hours-a-day reality show being aired." (Aronsky, 2005) The film reflects a typical audiences desire to be a part of a 'perfect world' and therefore by watching Truman, they feel connected with the character and envision the fake symbol as a version of reality. The audience also gets to see the hyperrealistic world through Truman's eyes as he starts to piece together that the rest of the cast neighbours and the creator are behind his imprisonment and that he is actually trapped in the unreal and forced to perform, not knowing it is infront of a live audience for his entire life. The viewer feels symphonic to the character of Truman because he goals and experiences he wanted to achieve but controllers in the real world prevent him from leaving the town with methods of trying to increase fear, return his father to him and even trying to kill him to stop Truman discovering the truth and the creator losing his twenty hour a day show. The creator in the show has also entrapped the auidence in the film because they constantly watch the show and become lost in the fairy tale forgetting about their own real lives, when the show goes off air at the end of the film the spell is broken as identified by members of the film audience suggesting 'shall we see what else is on'.
Figure 2, (2009), Breaking the Hyperreal – seeing Truman as his audience in the real world is watching him
The film also has a religious link to the idea of the creator as Truman's god because he has controlled and manipulated his entire life in tv world. "The imagery of the film's final act is suggestive an anti-religious parable about rejecting God - though a fleeting climatic prayer to the real God offered on Truman's behalf suggests that the target is not God, but his presumptuous imitators." (Greydanus, 2005) The characet Christof created the virtual world for Truman which makes him out to be 'godly' in the eyes of the viewer because he treats Truman as his creation as if he is special to Christof. The final scene when Truman walks through the exit indicates a sense of trumiph over his creator and finally enters the true world. Christof tells Truman that the lies and deceit are as real in the other as they are in his, this again could be reference to the religious belief of trying to convince people to stay on the right path and the conflicts against 'truth'. The viewer depicts the truimph as Truman's chance to finally have a normal dull life and that a hyperrealistic world is not as it appears but the audience chose to believe what they hear from media and advertising that pulls them in.
Figure 3, (2010), Truman outwits the Production team
Figure 1, (2010), The hyper realistic town (world) all seems normal at first, @ http://www.basement.org/2010/01/, Accessed on: 29th January 2010
Figure 2, (2009), Breaking the Hyperreal – seeing Truman as his audience in the real world is watching him, @ http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/filmblog/2009/mar/16/week, Accessed on: 22nd March 2009
Figure 3, (2010), Truman outwits the Production team, @ http://ncowie.wordpress.com/category/the-truman-show/page/2/, Accessed on: 19th June 2010
Aronsky Ron, (2005), Film threat - The Truman Show, @ http://www.filmthreat.com/reviews/7893/, Accessed on: 28th August 2008
Ebert Robert, (2000), Robert Ebert.com - The Truman Show, @ http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/19980605/REVIEWS/806050302, Accessed on: 1st January 2000
Greydanus Stephen, (2005), Decent Film's Guide - The Truman Show, @ http://www.decentfilms.com/reviews/trumanshow.html, Accessed on: 17th October 2005
3.5 / 5|