3.) Describe an important idea in the text. Explain whether or not you think this idea is relevant to teenagers today.
The Truman show
An important idea in Peter Weir’s film ‘The Truman Show’ is surveillance and social control between Truman (Main character) and the “God-like figure” Christof who socially controls the only real-life inside of the place they call Seahaven that’s configured inside of a dome that you’d see as the moon from a point of view of living life down on the ground.
‘The Truman Show’ is more relevant than ever as it predicted the rise of “reality” TV and society under tremendous surveillance. Our modern world is filled with examples of surveillance and it is fair to say that our privacy has become under threat because of this.
An important idea within the film is surveillance where estimated 5000 cameras every day since birth have been watching Truman pursue the life that works around himself in a routine. Truman became the star of the show from the EXTREME close up of him as a baby inside of his mother’s womb. This tells us that Christof the head of Seahaven went to extreme levels of privacy to watch someone’s every move but is very secretive of his own which relates to today’s world where there is a possibility you’re being watched by an older male or female that you’re unaware of which relates to the use of social media and the way they’re built to protect us from unknown child predators that lurk in the dark.
This also links to social control where at any means necessary Truman’s life is manipulated with flashbacks of his father’s death to give fear of the water so he has to stay on the island “Seahaven is the way the world should be.” Christof and the crew put Truman into his profession of insurance so that he is aware of the troubles if you leave or plan to travel. This shows the sort of control Christof the creator went through to keep Truman stranded on the island and has fear of leaving.
Even though Truman got close to escaping alongside Meryl (Truman’s wife) before coming upon certain events like the forest fire that spread across the road which made the camera shot over the shoulder to show what they see going into the fire and the aftermath of exceeding through the fire. This also led to vignetting to show that Truman is getting spied on because the camera shot is a circle with black around the outside to show it’s hidden and unknown. The social control that he’s secretly being watched in the scene, Meryl is trying to convince Truman that it’s a bad idea and he needs help because she is afraid of him leaving because as her acting job to keep him under manipulation to rule his life just like everyone else is.
Another important idea within the film is product placement that holds Truman accountable to them because in Truman’s everyday cycle the two twins push him up against the free-range Kaiser chicken with a close-up of the advertisement because everything on ‘The Truman Show’ is purchasable and the creators made this film for money not for entertainment, because at the end of the film even though people were on the edge of their seats where Truman sails through the calming water before the Christof and his team attempt to sabotage his journey “We can’t let him die in front of a live audience!”
“He was born on live TV.”
“He was born in front of a live audience.”
This dialogue shows how Truman means nothing to Christof even though he’s been with him since birth for the upcoming 30 years he has no heart for anybody then himself because he’s willing to kill Truman all because he has the chance to leave and nobody wants that because it means the shutdown of the show which you see in the ending where the security guards say “What else is on?” which symbolizes that the only human stuck inside of a dome has no worth to anyone and he’s only watched because there are no breaks and no cuttings of the human life cycle so everything is shown.
This is important to our day in age as teenagers because the mass society works around the internet and CCTV where we’re always being watched by someone most likely in another country or even people trying to hack into your computer from Microsoft help where they make you download this app called ‘Teamviewer’ which gives these hackers complete access to your whole desktop and private information which in this day in age most people aren’t aware of these actions that could cost you something more than money. Another example we have is the generation is upgrading to something different with facial recognition, and fingerprint, where most people making the change from Andriod to Apple or just being civil and socialize with your mouth which we see, is hard for us because texting is easier than talking some would say.
In conclusion, Peter Weir’s film ‘The Truman Show’ is a film about surveillance and social control and how the power of these elements was abused by Christof the creator and the on set crew that made Truman’s life different from everyone’s else because Seahaven is the way life should be. This film teachers us that we’re unaware of the things that happen around us and we shouldn’t always believe that our friends are real or fake and in on something that has a wider connection.