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This is an amazing film. It is filled with great insights into life.  According to the Bible we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. In other words, we are all being watched!
-Review by David Bruce
with a second review by
Crisitan Bruce.
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THE TRUMAN SHOW
(1998)
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How Will It End?
The world is watching.
The story of a lifetime.
Watch What Happens.
On The Air, Unaware.

Time Magazine says: Most people think they have something to do with shaping their existence. But what if that's a fiction? Who's directing our lives? And how do we negotiate with God or fate or the great TV auteur in the sky? Finally, the film speaks to man's isolation from the world around him.

Studio PR says: Truman's unsettling, darkly funny world is a kind of waking nightmare unlike anything ever previously created on film. This perverse mirror of millennium America speaks directly to our innermost fears and frustrations.

Cast: Jim Carrey, Laura Linney, Noah Emmerich, Natascha McElhone, Holland Taylor, Brian Delate and Ed Harris.
A Scott Rudin Production.
Directed by Peter Weir.
Screenplay by Andrew Niccol.
Paramount Pictures.
Rate PG

It is worth noting that the script was written by Andrew Niccol the 34-year-old New Zealander who also wrote and directed "Gattaca" . The director, Weir also did "The Year of Living Dangerously," and "Witness." In a recent interview Weir talked about being raised on classic American shows like "I Love Lucy" and "The Twilight Zone." The Truman Show seems to be a mix of those two shows!

THE STORY OF A TRUE-MAN
WHO FACES HIS GREATEST FEAR
AND IS SET FREE!
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Truman Burbank doesn't know it but he has been televised every second of every day, from the moment he was born. For thirty years he has been the unwitting star of the longest running, most popular documentary-soap opera in history. He lives in the town of Seahaven (sea heaven), which is actually a gigantic soundstage. Truman's friends and family - everyone he meets, in fact - are actors. He lives every moment under the unblinking gaze of 5,000 hidden TV cameras. His name is interesting.  It means, of course, "true man" and Burbank is where the famous Burbank Studios, Warner Bros., Disney, NBC-TV etc. are located in California.
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    Very common human fantasies/feelings include that of being watched; that life is somehow not real; of having more importance than we do; having a sense of being isolated and different. The Truman Show connects with all of these feelings. But more importantly, it connects with real human issues such as: self-determination, truth seeking, and overcoming fears. It is the story of an all-conquering love.

     There is a god-like director that controls Truman's televised world. His name is Christof. His name is also significant. He's more like anti-Christ however, making it impossible for Truman to know the truth and have a normal life.

     There is a visual pun in this film when a studio light falls from the sky. It's like St. Paul in the Bible when he was struck down by a heavenly light. Truman literally sees the light -pun intended. Truman Burbank gets the feeling that he's being watched. He needs to find out the truth.

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      Love is the force that brings down the house of cards. Love never dies. It is the compelling force that ultimately drives Truman to face and conquer his greatest fear. Truman falls in love in a library (symbol of the knowledge of good and evil). They kiss on the beach with the pounding surf in the background (foreshadowing what lies ahead). She is a bit player on the show and is quickly written out. She is banished from the show. Truman is told she moved away across the sea. Truman is now determined to leave Seahaven -the illusionary human-made Paradise. What is Paradise without Eve? Without love?
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     Seahaven is surrounded by water. This keeps Truman contained. Noting Truman's early love of boating, Christof staged a boating accident in which a violent chaotic "storm" swept Truman's "dad" off to sea.  This created a crisis of fear of the sea in the mind of Truman.  The sea = chaos, separation and death.
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     Truman in his truth seeking attempts to cross a bridge.  He is prevented by some cleverly staged events by Christof.   Little does anyone guess that Truman would face his greatest fear and escape in a boat, which he does.
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He is knocked out by the storm and lies with his arms outstretched as though he died. The ropes around him form the sign of the cross on his chest, emphasizing his crucified-like body posture. He has confronted his chaos monster. The sea is calm and he comes to. The sun is shining, the darkness is gone. This film is one symbol upon another. He continues to sail until he unexpectedly crashes into the end of the world (the back wall of the gigantic sound studio in which he lives). He gets out of the boat and walks on the ledge, as if walking on water, to a set of stairs leading up into the sky to the very door of heaven, or so it would seem.
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There is an interesting contrast here between the creator of the TV show and THE God of the universe. While Christof broadcasts his voice down to Truman, the girlfriend whispers a simple prayer up to God in a still small voice. Christof's words are well chosen, "I AM the Creator..." Truman confronts his god. Truman chooses the life in the next world over life with the god of this world. Love has won out. Truman becomes a true man.
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THE TRUMAN
& DISNEY CONNECTION

REVIEW BY CRISTIAN BRUCE

The Truman Show is by far the best movie I have seen this summer (1998). It is thoughtful, relevant, and it rewards those of us who watch movies carefully. The movie very much reminded me of the Disney-built town in Florida known as Celebration. For those of you unfamiliar with Celebration, it could be described as Disneyland's Main Street U.S.A, only on a suburb sized scale. There are many rules and conditions that the citizens of this town have to obey in order to keep it the "perfect suburb" that its creators have imagineered (very much like Christof's created world). It is supposed to be the perfect place to live and for some it apparently is. From what I understand, all the homes and apartments were spoken for even before they were finished being built. As I watched the movie, I couldn't help but think that Truman's hometown and Celebration are what many Americans would consider the perfect place to live. There is no crime, no bad weather, everyone has money, the homes all look the same, and your neighbors are all cut from the same cookie cutter mold as you. However, the film captured a perfect level of underlying tension that not all was right in Truman's world and the world of those around them. They lacked a spiritual side. They existed in a completely artificial, commercial world. Happiness came from new products and new homes. This is America, folks. This is what we are force-fed from when we are little babies until we retire to our golf courses in Florida. Money and products bring happiness. Consumerism is God. However, just like the elevator door that Truman finds to have no elevator behind it; consumerism is an empty shell. It may make many Americans rich but in the end does not bring them true happiness. Truman realizes, as all of us should, there is more to life than just this.

I liked my Dad's notice of Truman's last name, Burbank (the home of Disney studios). There are a couple of other jabs towards Disney that haven't been mentioned yet; the aforementioned nod to the town of Celebration and also the neighbor's Dalmatian that barks at Truman every morning as he leaves for work. There is no dog that better represents Disney than one of their 101 Dalmatians (except for Pluto of course). When Disney released their live action 101 Dalmatians movie (starring Glenn Close) a few years back, it did so with an amazing amount of media hype and advertising. Did you know that they tried to get permission to paint black dots on the Hollywood sign as a publicity stunt? Thankfully they weren't allowed to do it. What I really liked about the use of the Dalmatian, in the film, was that although he barked at Truman he was obviously a very harmless dog. However, later in the film, when the whole town is looking for Truman, the Dalmatian leads the way. The spotted canine has become an absolutely vicious tracking dog with his sharp teeth exposed. His harmless bark is replaced by a vicious snarl and growl. This is consumerism and mass marketing, once again, rearing its ugly head and leading the masses that follow it while it seeks to find and convert those (Truman) that don't worship this false God.

Just some thoughts from Cristian Bruce.
Cris, my son, is a student at Chico State University working on his teaching credentials. His degree is in English with a minor in film.

Australian Youth leader Scott Berry has some thoughts, too.
Visitor response:

THE MATRIX CONNECTION
Subject: TrumanShow
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002
From: steve

 First off - I don't think we should be quick to pronounce that the filmmakers had some anti-christian agenda as several of these responses have. I would more venture to say that this was someone's very creative concept of a story into which their natural worldview has leaked - and it is likely a worldview in which it is better to be free with consequences, than bound without consequences. But no matter what the "agenda," the fact is that in The Truman Show we have a great springboard to examine alot of the questions so many ask throughout their lives. Let's engage those questinos, rather than avoiding them!

 First off - I don't think we should be quick to pronounce that the filmmakers had some anti-christian agenda as several of these responses have. I would more venture to say that this was someone's very creative concept of a story into which their natural worldview has leaked - and it is likely a worldview in which it is better to be free with consequences, than bound without consequences. But no matter what the "agenda," the fact is that in The Truman Show we have a great springboard to examine alot of the questions so many ask throughout their lives. Let's engage those questinos, rather than avoiding them!

Now, I think a very interesting study could be made between this film and three others - The Matrix, Dark City, and The Thirteenth Floor. All three contain the notion of a constructed reality and particularly the former two involve central characters learning how to break free of that fake-reality. Truman Show certainly has that aspect as well, which can progress into a very strong pro-Christian argument (whether or not the filmmakers considered it so).

 As someone below noted, the character of Christof, whether intended to be or not, cannot be a God-Type. He is not perfect, he has a personal agenda for keeping Truman in his Fantasy World, as revealed in lines like, "We are getting more ratings with this graphic than we have with anything else!" and, "Say something! You're live to the whole world!" It's all a show to him, a chance to be an artist, to manipulate Truman to thrill the rest of the world. The speechat the Exit door is not his true heart, it's his hope of keeping Truman where he needs him to be. The devil's last ditch effort to keep the sinner placated before he exits to the true world. It's no different from the society created by the computer in The Matrix with the agenda to keep humans as batteries, or the world created and re-created by the aliens of Dark City to discover the soul of man - all these pseudo-gods have personal agendas.

 In this view of things, Truman's journey, though likely intended as on of humanism, more accurately comes off as the journey from naiviety to knowledge and truth! I mean, come on! Is it such a stretch? If Superman and E.T. can be Jesus, then why can't Christof be the devil?

Response: Sure, why not? -David

TV IS BIGGER THAN GOVERNMENTS
Subject: Truman Show
Date: Sun, 1 Jul 2001
From: Thomas

Much has been said of the movies' religious themes: (I think it is a negatvie comment on faith in the Christ). But, what about T.V. Come on. T.V. has taken over the world for the last 30 years. People want to watch others live and will all go along with the deception and not even world governments are as strong as Television. True, there is a vocal minority (as is stated in the movie) but materialism conquers even even faith in the Christ and eventually death is the only way out according to the movie. Lot's -o- stuff in the film
--thanks. Thomas

ABOUT SUICIDE
Subject: Truman Show Response
Date: Thu, 15 Mar 2001
From: Millie

I know this is supposed to be an uplifting view of the show, a 'Christian' view, but to me, it seems a movie about suicide, giving up all for what lies beyond, for a need that cannot be understood.

Response: Suicide? I suppose! But, for me, it is more about "forgetting those things which are behind and pressing toward the mark before us." -David

TRUMAN'S STRUGGLE AND PSALM 139
Date: Sat, 24 Feb 2001
From: Steve Fridsma
The Culture Code CentrePointe Church

David-
Our small group (The Culture Code) viewed "The Truman Show" last night and we came up with some observations that we'd like to run past you and your readers. In either respect, the movie raised questions that suggest a very dark side to the creator role that is Christof. Is "The Truman Show", and particularly the role of Christof, a criticism of God or an anti-metaphor that results in testifying to His love and power?

First the basic take: Truman can be seen to represent humankind and our struggle to know truth and our relationship to our creator. However, the movie portrays a flawed creator in Christof, who is not as omnipotent, omnipresent, or loving as our holy God. In this respect I wonder if the writer of the movie is casting doubt as to the true power of God the creator - or that he might be "slipping up in his old age" and clinging to the past when everything used to go smoothly and he received the proper respect that he deserved. The Truman Show is unraveling, the set is falling apart. Truman is catching on to the truth and actors are starting to slip up. Christof clings to the possibility of continuing the show even though it would never be the same once Truman is now aware of the truth. Is the author trying to say that God is losing his touch - the clockmaker who set the world in motion is getting senile?

I suppose all of this could be interpreted to either be a criticism of God as a disinterested creator and abusive manipulator - or to testify that God's omnipotence is so much higher than anything humanity could create or invent.

There are several other symbols worth mentioning that are not in your review. The sailboat Truman takes to the edge of the world is named "Santa Maria" obviously for Christ's mother Mary (the carrier of the Messiah) and the name of the lead ship of Columbus' fleet that discovered the new world (at least for Southern Europe!). The number on the sail is 139. As Truman regains consciousness and is determined to raise the sail once again, he pulls himself upright by clutching the sail precisely at the number. He then raises the sail with the 139 blatantly displayed. Why this number?

Consider Psalm 139 (NIV): "O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar." (Truman is often seen waking and sleeping, and of course is followed every moment of his life. Unlike God, who the psalmist says perceives our thoughts from afar, Christof is told by Truman: "You never had a camera in my head!")

"You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD." (Christof and his crew know Truman's routine and follow him to and fro with precision. It is when Truman decides to deviate from his ways that he becomes difficult to track down. The camera can't find him when he comes back out of the revolving door at work. Interestingly, many scenes focus on Truman going out and lying down, leaving the house in the morning as well as sleeping.) "You hem me in--behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain." (Christof controls how far and how wide Truman can travel - when he is trying to drive off the island, he literally hems him in from behind and before with his "instantaneous traffic" when Truman is seeking more knowledge. Is God being portrayed as a killjoy? Christof often literally lays his hand on the image of Truman as he sleeps or during their conversation. But it is a human, possessive love, not the relentless sacrificial love of God.)

"Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there." (Truman is on constant display, and cannot flee from the presence of the crew. Interestingly, it is when Truman literally makes his bed in the depths - he appears to fall asleep in a makeshift bed in his basement but actually places a fake body under the blankets and runs away - Christof is not there. Christof missed it - he had to slumber and sleep. Again, is the author questioning God's ability to do what the Bible claims he can? Or merely testifying to the fact that no human can do what God does?)

"If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast." (Truman literally settles on the far side of the sea at dawn, with his ship held fast by the artificial creation of Christof's - but Christof is not able to steady him or comfort him. In fact, Christof is persisting in trying to control Truman and keep the truth from him.)

"If I say, 'Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,' even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you." (Truman escaped Christof's watchful eye at night, and the highly organized teams of extras searching for him could not find him. Unlike God, for whom the night shines like the day, Christof says, "We'll never find him in the darkness. Cue the sunrise." even though it was still 2:00 in the morning. In the Truman Show, surely the darkness did hide Truman. Unlike God, Christof could not find Truman in the darkness, the dark was not like the day, and he had to cue the sunrise in order to find Truman.)

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." (The Truman show began being broadcast while Truman was still in the womb - footage is shown of his ultrasound. Truman's life was ordained - spontaneity and free will were factored out of the equation - in this respect, having your days ordained is demonstrated as sinister, manipulative, and abusive. Is this a criticism of God?)

Our group also discussed the possibility that another way to view the movie is that Christof represents the Creator Father God and Truman is Christ, not us or the "everyman". Could it be that the writer of the movie desires to portray God as a faulty, manipulative parent who thrust his child Christ (Truman) into his creation as the unwitting star? As in "Last Temptation of Christ" and "Jesus of Montreal", Christ here is depicted as a great, kind, and selfless man who is not nearly as sure of his mission here on earth as the Biblical Jesus is depicted to have been. We saw Truman's defiant "Is that the best you can do?" as a foil for Christ's "Why have you forsaken me?" The movie casts doubt as to how omnipotent God really is. It also asks the question, "Why do you say that God had to send Jesus into the world to die in order to redeem it? And he manipulated the circumstances to make it happen? How awful, what a big bully. My God wouldn't do that." I do not know of the faith background of the writer of the film, but I had been asked the same question by several Jewish classmates on different occassions back in college.

The Christof/God and Truman/Jesus continues - Christof often speaks of Truman in glowing terms similar to "This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased." Obviously, Truman "walks on water" and "ascends into heaven", and is depicted as crucified in the boat and makes that shape again as he leaves the earth. He is carried by Mary "Santa Maria." The actors in Seahaven tempting Truman to remain in this "paradise" seemed similar to Jesus' temptation by the Devil.

However, this Truman/Jesus defies the faulty Christof/God by turning his back on him and his ascension is like walking out on him. Is it possible that the author intends this portrayal of a faulty God and an ungrateful Christ? Despite these possibilities - our group felt it was a worthy movie for all of the faith issues it raises.

Also - in response to Cristain's review:

The dalmation's name in the movie IS "Pluto!"

The town in the Truman Show is a real town called Seaside on the Gulf Coast of Florida. Seaside is a result of reseach by architects/urban planners Peter Calthorpe and Andres Duany into environmentally sustainable and livable communities. The theories of neo-traditional town planning were used to create a community not subject to sprawl and friendly for public transportation. It is a pedestrian pocket based on how far an average person can walk in 10 minutes and where you do not need a car to get everywhere. Shopping, schools, services, and public transportation nodes are 5 minutes from any home. The town was designed without the typical zoning ordinance, which stratifies economic classes and prevents mixed uses and living arrangement alternatives such as apartments above storefronts. For Seaside, upper class single detatched homes were purposely built right next to lower middle class single detatched homes, lower class duplexes, and studio apartments. The scale of the streetscape is purposely kept small enough so that you cannot avoid meeting your neighbors, and does not cater to automobiles. The idea would be that instead of just extending this pocket of development, it would be reproduced further down the beach, not extended through sprawl. Greenbelts surround each community.

So, Seaside really was designed to be redemptive and increase sustainability, livability, and community. Ironically, this very focus on quality of life and dignity for all economic groups together made it extremely popular, which priced the homes and condos out of the lower economic classes. Celebration!, Disney's version, came years and years later and is a poor imitation of the better neo-traditional towns.
Steve Fridsma The Culture Code CentrePointe Church

QUESTIONS
Date: Sun, 27 Aug 2000
From: "Kunal

Hello, I just watched "The Truman Show" last night on The Movie Channel and I have a couple of questions to ask you that I am hopeful you can help me out with. First, does the audience know that "The Truman Show" has been scripted or do they think it is his real life, without knowing there are produces, actors, etc.? (Response: they know)

Second, after Sylvia told Truman that his life is TV show and "don't believe anybody" on that night in the beach, in which they "escaped" from the library, where did she wind up? In the authentic world or Truman's world? (Response: the authentic world)

Third, is the authentic life in which Truman entered in at the end of the movie, the so-called life we live in? (Response: Yes)

Thank you for your time and I really hope you can answer these questions as soon as possible. A quick response will be greatly appreciated.
Thank you again for your time, Kunal

ASKED JESUS TO BE MANAGER OF LIFE
Subject: TrumanShow_Berry Wow!
Date: Fri, 18 Feb 2000
From: kimboins

After reading this, I want to buy a copy of 'the truman show' and give it to everyone I know with a copy of this review included in the package!
It illustrates what Todd Rundgren meant when he said that all this stuff here on earth is an illusion. I am also reminded of the prayer I said to God when I was saved- I got down on my knees, crying my eyes out, and told Him how badly I had messed up my life, and asked Him to come in and be the new manager! And, yes, I too have story after story of how He has done that.
(story) Just prior to that prayer, very late at night- cause I was a night kind of person -I was in a grocery store parking lot and dropped an empty soda can (maybe Sprite). That can supernaturally rolled away and I chased after it (cause I was bad, but not a litterer). I finally reached it, out away from everything (as God intended it to be). I looked out around me and realized how empty and barren the world was, and how alone I was without Jesus.
Mr. Berry, thanks so much for that review. To paraphrase the old Coke song (which paraphrases another old song): "I'd like to buy the world a ticket to the HollywoodJesus site"

My response: Thank you for the wonderful words. And thank you most of all for making Jesus the manager of your life.

SEARCHING FOR OUR IDENTITY
June 5, 1999. IN THIS MATEREALISTIC WORLD IT BECOME NECESSARY TO FIND OUR IDENTITY. AND THIS FILM TRIES TO SHOW THIS PROBLEM OF AN INDIVIDUAL. THAT'S THE GREAT ACHEIVMENT –Bankim

GOD HAS A WONDERFUL PLAN
April 30, 1999. Well done for your response to Kizu. Coming from a narrowminded, repressive youth group myself, it took a lot for me to see that the vision of a God they were presenting was not the correct one. Indeed, after watching the Truman Show, it did make me sad at the negative representation it has of God. God is not a dictator - yes he does want control over our lives and has a masterplan for us, but, his gift of the freedom of choice for us only exemplifies the fact that he wants us to work with him in the wonderful plans he has for us. It states in Jeremiah somewhere that God says "the plans I have are good for you, not to hurt you". How possibly could a creator want to destroy and hurt the thing that they he has so lovingly made? In God's version of the film, he would have a) at least made it more obvious to Truman what was going on, and b)Truman would have prayed to him and c) Truman would have got that girl he fell for - or, if not, something better. My prayers go out to people like Kizu in the hope that they will genuinely find and experience God's wonderful love for them and will know the truth.
-Paula, England

BRILLANT ALLEGORY FOR THE HUMAN CONDITION
April 09, 1999. The Truman Show - a brilliant allegory for the human condition. 'Truman /True Man' is a fair equation, but I think Niccol could have done better than 'Christof' for his Archon of Seahaven. Perhaps 'Sataniel' (He who like the Opposer) might have been better for the allegory - although less effective for a movie. The Bible tells us that Satan has manipulated this world to achieve his ends. Yes... it's all very much like a conspiracy. How will it end...for you and for me...? One could discuss philosphical interpretations (ontology, existentialism, phenomenology) in trying to determine what Niccol is really saying, as I believe his art (Truman, Gattaca...) would bear all such analyses. Perhaps, with inspired writers like Niccol, there is cause for much hope that Hollywood can help humanity think about where it is going a little more seriously. Thank you, Mr Niccol. And, thank you, Messrs Bruce for you fine work with this site.--Mark Storm storm@ruralnet.net.au

THOUGHT-PROVOKING MOVIE
Jan 22 1999, A great movie.   I watched the Truman Show for the first time last week, when I bought it on laser disc.  It really is a thought-provoking movie, and one particular scene that really got to me emotionally, was when Truman and Marlon are sitting at the end of a pier, in which Marlon is telling Truman how much his friendship means to him, and how he would never lie. And then you see Christoff, feeding Marlon his words.   It was at that point that I really felt sorry for Truman, because I felt he was this innocent victim who was really been used by everyone around him.

ALLEGORY FOR DISILLUSIONED
Jan 16, 1999. Hello There! I appreciate your web site...very interesting stuff. I just got finished watching the Truman Show, and must say that I enjoyed it. However, I believe that the makers of this film intended it to be an allegory of those who are disillusioned by religion. And that the "truth" or the "reality" of the world is to be found outside of the soundstage (Truman's world protected from the hostile reality that there is no God.) Christof is intended to be Christ, albeit a very twisted idea of who Christ is. As much as I try to respect any films attempt to be more than a simple story, this one left a bad taste in my mouth and I think Kizu ("I was a christian") is totally correct in his interpretation of what the film is trying to say. It is sad that the world has such a negative impression of our faith.

STUNNED BY DEJA VU
When I first saw this film I was stunned by the deja vu of a state of mind I wrestled with in my late teens, that there was some sort of vast cosmic secret that some around me knew and some did not. I even went so far as making lists of persons I was sure knew the secret, even though I had no idea what that secret was about. I suppose I eventually got past it, because when I saw this film it all came rushing back to me after many years. It really shook me up. I thought the film to be extremely profound, examining not only questions of the meaning of life, happiness, and knowledge, but even studying a couple of very strange father-son relationships.

TRUE LOVE BRINGS SIGHT.
David, I watched the film this week and loved the way it unfolded, as it progressed. It is one of those that you need to see twice and I agree with what you have written it was obvioulsy an esoteric film. However, one thing I believe that you missed, was the important distiguishing element that enabled him to SEE. True Love! Not so much romantic and certainly not erotic, but true Love in the eyes of this girl. Her heart and concern for him was the only truth he knew, but amazingly he new it. Doesn't the Holy Sprit show us the truth? Also true unselfish Love is the greatest gift from God and is the factor that makes everything else (all the other gifts) mean something instead of nothing - 1Corinthians 13. -colin_bosher@hp.com

ASTONISHINGLY DEEP
An astonishingly deep movie. I hope that it gets the honest and in-depth investigation it deserves. -Chris

WANT TO SEE IT AGAIN
I have seen The Truman Show three times and I didn't catch all the things you mention. You make me want to see it again. Thank you. I want to take  my friends to see this movie. -Kathy

NO MORE DRUGS
The Truman Show really describes my spiritual journey. I just went along with the crowd until one day I realized I had to make a change. In my case it was drugs and irresponsibility. It was my decision to follow Jesus that really turned me around. Everyone around Truman just went along with the director. Everyone that I hung around just went along with the same ol' same ol'.  I like the part when the light falls on Truman. That's the way it was for me. One day I just knew everything in my life was wrong. My sea was drugs, but I faced it and conquered it. Thanks for Hollywood Jesus. -Mike

CHRISTOF?
I loved Truman. Great film. But, do you think that the name Christof is really a take off on the name of Christ. -John

My response: Yes, it seems so obvious. Even Time magazine picked up on it. In fact, in the studios own PR on the movie speaks of Christof as God like -that is someone taking the place of God.

LIKE HJ TRUMAN
David, I loved what you have done with Truman. Right on.

LARGE SCALE DECEPTION?
David, I am a 41 year old 1st year Philosophy student (a late bloomer) and my first assignment in over 25 years is 'Could I be the victim of a large scale deception about the world which seems to be the source of my experience? Set out sceptical arguments which raise this alleged possibility and consider sceptical arguments of Descartes or others ...such as the systematic doubt or deception in movies like “Total Recall or Dark City”. What do you think is the best way of addressing these sceptical arguments?'
     Truman has not yet been released here but it was movies like "It's a wonderful life" that led to my life long interest in Philosophy that I have only now had the opportunity to pursue in earnest.
     As I have said in my assignment I believe that "Cinema Fiction has become a means for contemporary, non-academic writers such as King and Niccol to explore traditionally Philosophical questions. This provides an opportunity to stimulate thought and discussion of these ideas in the public arena."
     While, as I said, Truman has not been released we have seen extensive advertising for the show so I was seeking information from the net when I found your Page. I found it most helpful as it was so thoroughly informative.
     Of course my essay is only now in the research stage but my working hypothesis is that (as Truman and other movies show) the problem with sustaining any deception (or self deception) is continuity. The way therefore to approach this question may lie in examining the "holes-in the-plot" of our lives. A starting point for these is the various questions (moral right, existence of god, identity etc) that Philosophers are concerned with.
     In other words our "reality" is not seamless. I simply ask could these inconsistencies represent the flaws that may later become clues.
     I have to agree with one of your respondents who argues that Christof could as easily be a description of your god as of commercialism but I'm not prepared to debate our contrary religious convictions.
     Thanks again for the information and if you like I'll send you a copy of the end result.
-Peter G in Brisbane Australia

My Response:

Yes, I would like a copy. I am intrigued by your current study. And yes, we are victims of our own culture. A study of the third world reveals this. "How many colors are there in a rainbow?" Most in our culture would say six (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple). However, some third world cultures see only two colors: warm and cool. In fact there are millions of colors. Our language and cultural conditioning limits our perception of reality. There is a line in Truman, "we accept the world as it is presented to us." How true this is. How few people do what you are doing: Question the reality of the world as it has been presented to us. Go for it my man. Because you are indeed a "victim of a large scale deception about the world which seems to be the source of (your) experience."
     Check out this biblical passage: 1 Cor. 1:27-28 (NLT) "Instead, God deliberately chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose those who are powerless to shame those who are powerful. God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important."
This is Truman. And it is you.

Thank you for your kind words regarding Hollywood Jesus, David.

I WAS A CHRISTIAN
     I was a born again Christian for 25 years, spirit filled for 15, and heavy into apologetics. I saw myself in the Truman show, and it's interesting because I saw the opposite of what you saw. I felt like God treated me just like Christoff (Christophany) treated Truman: He says he loves Truman, and he gives Truman the "perfect life", but at the same time, he does everything he can to keep Truman from the things he really wants, not that they are evil, they just aren't in God's "perfect plan". When Truman started questioning based on the reality that he was seeing, everybody told him he was crazy. The more I prayed and cooperated with God and the church, the more exploited and abused I became. When I questioned it or got counseling, they told me it was just demons. All my "friends" told me the words of the Holy Spirit, just like Truman's "friend" did, designed to keep him there. It was so scary to leave, I would go to hell and God's wrath would be on me. But if to stay would be unbearable sadness in Jesus' "abundant life". Everything I ever wanted he destroyed in my life. Like a loving husband and a home. I am glad that I have walked away from God and Jesus' saving blood. Now I have peace. Now I have control over my destiny. I am no longer plagued by guilt and fear. I thought the film was in reality anti-religious. I think you are twisting it to say that Christoff was "anti-Christ". He was the perfect image of Christ. He gave Truman life, and he would take it away in an instant to keep him in line. Just like Jehovah who practices genocide, germ warfare, chemical warfare, and regularly kills babies to punish the sins of their fathers (which means he's a liar - an imperfect sinner). And Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. -Kizu
My Response:
Dear Kizu
What "Christian" group were you in? Yes, the Truman Show was your experience. No one can deny you your experience. It is hard for me to imagine a good Christian group that would side track honest questions with dismissals like "you'll go to hell" or "that's demonic." This is unholy and demonic and very much anti-Christ. I am glad you left that  repressive group. May God sent their narrow minded repressive ideas to hell!
     You say you are free and yet your comments exhibit a lot of anger -perhaps, even towards God. I saw the film Rapture the other day. Your comments bring it back to mind. It is about a young woman (Mimi Rodgers) who tells God she does not want to go to his heaven because of all the suffering he allowed in the world. Is this you? If it is good!  Jacob in the Bible was renamed Israel because he wrestled with God! The name of  God's people in Hebrew scriptures is "Israel" and it means "those who wrestle with  God."
     Please continue in your spiritual struggle with God. Don't give up. It's important. Keep asking the tough question. And, for your own sake, stay away from repressive cultist groups that paint God's world like the Truman show. I am glad you got out. Now explore  what God will do now! You are Truman at heaven's door about to enter the real world.
     Your comment was to long for the guest book so I moved it to the Truman page. Please e-mail me your additional thoughts. I would love to continue this dialog. And maybe post it as we go along. Your life and thoughts are very, very important.
Yours in the struggle,

David Bruce