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Truman Show, The (1998)

As the media pushed the boundaries of decency to their very limits, offering up the lives of other people as acceptable viewing fodder, along came The Truman Show.

Although it didn’t stop intrusive reality TV, it did at least make everyone sit up and start thinking about the need to enforce some limitations on just how far this form of ‘entertainment’ should be allowed to go.

Truman Burbank (Jim Carrey) lives in a picture-perfect world where he is surrounded by nice neighbours, a perfect wife (Laura Linney) and the material trappings of a good job.

What he isn’t aware of however is that his every move is being broadcast to millions of viewers who put their own lives on hold as they sit down in front of the television to watch the mundane happenings in his.

Adopted by the company that produces the show, Truman has only ever known the manufactured perfection of Seahaven and appears to be quite content with his lot until he falls for Sylvia (Natascha McElhone).

Like all the other inhabitants of the town, apart from Truman, Sylvia is an actress, but when she starts to feel the same way about him she is swiftly removed from the set and a plausible excuse is concocted so that Truman isn’t suspicious.

When he isn’t allowed to leave the town, alarm bells start ringing and it isn’t long before Truman realises that things are amiss and the only reality he’s ever known is about to be revealed as fake.

This is a truly original and extremely clever film that asks some pertinent questions about the world we live in.

Carrey is wonderfully cast as Truman and is backed up by some great performances in the supporting cast.

“Good morning, and in case I don’t see ya, good afternoon, good evening, and goodnight!”

Truman Burbank
Jim Carrey
Ed Harris
Laura Linney
Noah Emmerich
Lauren / Sylvia
Natascha McElhone
Truman’s mother
Holland Taylor
Truman’s father
Brian Delate
Control room director
Paul Giamatti
Mike Michaelson
Harry Shearer
Network executive
Philip Baker Hall
Network executive
John Pleshette

Peter Weir