Starring: Jim Carrey, Ed Harris, Laura Linney
Director: Peter Weir
Running Time: 102 mins
The Truman Show is an American film about a man whose entire life is the centre of a TV show, where his whole world is fake, and millions across the world have been watching every moment of his life since his birth.
This film is fantastic. It’s a beautifully written and thoughtful story that presents a hugely relevant argument, which makes it unbelievably fascinating to watch. It’s also got some good comedy in it, and excellent central performance by Jim Carrey, but somewhat of a warped atmosphere that often makes it overly complicated.
One of the beauties of this film is how it doesn’t use Truman’s suspicions and ultimate discovery that his whole life is just a TV show to create tension, but rather gives that to you from the off, and makes a much deeper and more intriguing story to get you properly excited about it, which shows how intelligent it really is.
Neither is the pacing too slow, as when you’ve got such a deep story, the film usually pauses and gives you time to reflect, but this carries on at a steady pace as if there maybe is nothing going on at all, assuming the characteristics of the made-up world in which Truman lives.
You may then think that this film is not particularly entertaining, and perhaps too arty, however the writing, and Jim Carrey’s perfect central performance adds a degree of fun and games to the whole idea of the world being faked, which gives you a little bit of respite from the thinking games.
The themes in this film are also amazingly interesting, leaving you with no less than three things to think about as the film’s going along.
Firstly, it talks extremely elegantly about how humans have a natural instinct for freedom, and can always perceive when they’re being deceived, and that theme not only adds to the intrigue, but also makes it much easier to relate to Truman and support him more.
Also, the film talks about the relentless power of the media, and how it can literally control people’s lives, as well as looking at the rise of reality TV, and how overly intricate and preposterous the genre is, just to get high ratings.
The one problem with this film that really brought it down was the control of its atmosphere. Everything else, from the plot, to the acting and the writing, is well controlled, but the atmosphere is never really that consistent.
You’ve got a clear divide between the comedy and the drama section, in the opening and the latter stages of the film respectively, but then, you also have a strange mixture of thought-provoking questions, drama and comedy in some scenes, which can really throw you off the ball in deciphering this story at points.
Overall, though, I’ll give this a 7.9, because it’s a fantastically written, thought-out, acted and relevant story, despite its strange atmosphere.