“The life where nothing was ever unexpected. Or inconvenient. Or unusual. The life without colour, pain or past” (Lois Lowry). Pleasantville is a 1998 American fantasy comedy-drama film written, produced, and directed by Gary Ross. A brother and sister, David and Jennifer, are sucked into their television set and suddenly find themselves stuck in a 1950’s television show called “Pleasantville.” David and Jennifer suddenly find themselves in this strange city, as Bud and Mary Sue Parker, completely transformed and therefore black and white. “Pleasantville” is a film that can be classified as a dystopian, a satire, and a bildungsroman story.
A dystopia is a futuristic, imagined universe in which exists an oppressive society, and the illusion of a perfect society are maintained through technological, moral, or totalitarian control. Pleasantville is a dystopian story. David and Jennifer are both transported into a “perfect” world within a black and white television show where there is no fighting, no questioning of authority, and there are no fires. The people in Pleasantville do not know anything about the outside world. “What’s outside of Pleasantville?” (Ross). The geography class does not learn about "world" geography. The whole world lives on Main Street. When asked where Main Street ends, the teacher simply answers that the end of Main Street is the beginning of the Main Street again. In Pleasantville, women take care of the house while men work. When George Parker, Bud and Mary Sue Parker’s father, comes home from work and says, "Honey, I'm home", his wife is supposed to come to the door to welcome him, but she does not. Had she been home, she would have made dinner, and welcome him, as usual. In this city, everyone follows the same routine everyday, everyone looks the same, because they are all black and white, and the pages of the books are blank, because books are a symbolism of knowledge and the people in Pleasantville are not allowed to know ones...
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