Analysis of Ideas Presented by 'the Truman Show'

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The idea of a Utopian society subject to rigid controls and round-the-clock surveillance has inspired a host of authors and film producers over the years, from George Orwell's 1984 through to the so-called reality television series Big Brother and its subsequent imitations. The Truman Show depicts this same “shangri-la” - a seemingly perfect community that is in reality, a contrived social experiment or in this case a form of entertainment. This main theme in The Truman Show is based on a disturbing characteristic our contemporary society. Everywhere we look, today, we see powerful shapers of media, including entertainment companies, news organizations, corporations and political groups, who with a smile, offer us enjoyment and an easy life, when really, behind the mask, lies manipulation, surveillance and social control. In The Truman Show, we are presented with a metaphor for our own manipulative media situation. The stage-set town of Seahaven where Truman has grown up and lives, is completely artificial. Truman, completely unaware of this, carries on being absorbed in his stage-set world, convinced that it's real, while his every move, relationship and life is broadcasted to millions of people around the world. Seahaven is a representation of our own media landscape, in which we are constantly immersed in and where news, politics, advertising and public affairs are made up of theatrical illusions. Like our media landscape, The Truman Show is convincing in its realism, with the support of lifelike simulations and story lines. It is seamless – there is nothing to suggest that it is all an illusion, that is, until things start to go wrong. A set-malfunction resulting in a light dropping from the sky', gives not only the audience but also Truman the indication that the illusion is breaking down. This prompts Truman to begin questioning his life in Seahaven and develop a paranoia of a 'conspiracy' building against him. His fear of leaving the world Christof...
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