“We’ve become bored with watching actors give us phony emotions. We are tired of pyrotechnics and special effects. While the world he inhabits is, in some respects, counterfeit, there’s nothing fake about Truman himself. No scripts, no cue cards. It isn’t always Shakespeare, but it’s genuine. It’s a life.” -Ed Harris as “Christof”
I am a movie lover. No, scratch that; I am a film junkie. I love movies in all shapes and sizes (or rather, genres and lengths) but every one in a while, I will watch a film that doesn’t just make me laugh and think but also makes me feel. “The Truman Show”, starring Jim Carrey is one such film. The film, in summary is about a director who wanted to make the world’s greatest reality show, something that was truly a slice of life, and so he came up with the idea of taking an infant and raising him on camera, with actors to portray his parents, friends and every single person that he would ever encounter for the rest of his life….all without his knowledge.
In the film, Jim Carrey portrays Truman Burbank, the title character of a show which has become a global phenomena, thanks to amazing ability of the actors (most notably Truman’s wife, who is also just another actor) and the direction of Christof, who came up with the show’s brilliant concept and is played by the exceptionally talented Ed Harris. “The Truman Show” is one of Jim Carrey’s few non-comedic roles but, for me at least, it is exactly in such roles where his talent as an actor truly shines.
In Truman Burbank, the hapless victim in the world’s greatest charade, the audience sees someone who is just trying to live his life only to discover that his life has no real value but to entertain and amuse others. We feel his betrayal as Truman discovers that he is the only genuine person, the only one not reading a script, in his own life.
In Truman’s quest for the truth and, eventually, for freedom, I saw a bit of myself, and anyone else who’s ever felt trapped by life. But Truman’s determination to live in a world of random chance rather than remain trapped in a bubble of scripted predictability are some of the bravest moments ever to be captured on film.