The Truman Show essay

  1. Describe an important idea in the text.
    Explain whether or not you think this idea is relevant to teenagers today.

In the film “The Truman Show” directed by Peter Weir, an important idea in the text was how Christof uses surveillance and social control to control Truman’s every move and to prevent him from leaving Sea Haven. Truman is pretty much Christof real life puppet as Christod crontols his every move and controls everything that goes on around him and in his life. Truman is the main character in the film, he is under surveillance 24/7 and is controlled by his family and friends. Truman has no idea that his whole life has already been set out for him and that everything and everyone is fake.

‘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.

Surveillance is used throughout the whole film, Truman is watched by 5000 cameras scattered all around Sea Haven. Sea Haven is where Christof keeps Truman so he is able to control everything that goes on. Christof sees himself as a god-like figure thinking “Sea Haven is the way the world should be” Christof uses vignette camera shots on almost every camera, this draws the viewer’s attention to the center of the scene and to make it look like the camera is hidden and is looking through a small gap. One of the most disturbing acts of surveillance was the extreme close up of Truman in his mothers womb, this is disgusting and completely unethical.

Christof also uses social control to prevent Truman from leaving Sea Haven and to stop him from doing anything he truly enjoys. Truman is mainly controlled by Christof, Merly his (fake) wife and Marlon his (fake) best friend. Merly is very dominating in the relationship redistricting. E.g Truman was talking about leaving Sea Haven and going to Fiji but then Merely said “Don’t be silly” and “ I thought we were going to try for a baby”. Another act of social control when Truman went to book tickets to go to Fiji when he walked in there poster with lighting going through a plane saying “It could happen to you”. There is also a low angle shot used to show the poster and Truman with the poster in the background. This is to scare Truman from flying to stop him from leaving Sea Haven, because if he leaves Christof will stop making money. Truman was also socially controlled from a child, at school he said “ I want to be an explorer” then the teacher quickly said “ oh you’re too late there’s nothing left to be explored” Any time Truman attempted to leave a problem was brought to his attention. E.g when Truman drove off with Merly he had to stop as there was a leak at the nuclear plant. Truman then got out of the car and prossed to run, where he was tackled to the ground by people in gas suits. There was a high angle camera shot taken here from the trees to show the surroundings and Truman.

This is defenfenty relevant to teenagers today as they are the most watch generation ever. This gives them some idea of what is like to be watched and socially controlled so they can keep an eye out in case it was to happen to them. And with technology these days people can talk and communicate with other people anytime anywhere and the messages that are sent are logged forever.

In conclusion I think Truman’s life is wrong and unethical from the way he is treated and controlled. No one should ever have to live a life when everyone around them is fake and their life is a lie. Christof thinks he has given the best life to Truman but actually I believe he has ruined it. The way he uses surveillance and social control is in no way okay and the way he uses pure raw emotion for the entertainment of others and so he can make money.

Kia ora
What a great text to choose.
In the introduction you set up the first art of the question - the idea you will explore. The second part is brought in in the next paragraph and you outline why it is relevant ( teenagers could have been specifically mentioned as it is in the question ). You use well chosen techniques and give examples for them all which is great. The second part where you go into why it is relevant could be extended a little more. Think about why social control and surveillance is used. It gives people power over others? It gets them money or economic benefit? They enjoy it? Then you will have more to talk about. Overall a solid essay. :+1:

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