The Truman Show Essay, Research Paper
“The Truman Show” and Hierophonic Visions
The Truman Show depicts the life of a human that was adopted by a company and filmed all his life. His life had been broadcast all around the world and people everywhere have lived his life with him. The story starts with the main character, Truman, an adult and married now, leaving for work. It follows his day by day routine and the viewer quickly realizes how boring and mundane this man’s life is.
The hierophonic vision in the movie was the smile of the young woman Truman saw while he was in high school. It stood out because of the sincerity of her smile. Truman hadn’t seen the behavior of someone making their own decisions, in this case her decision to smile at him, so when it occurred his normal life of pretend emotions faded away and lost all importance. What took its place was a dream of this other world that, through her smile, he saw a glimpse of. Throughout the rest of his life, Truman longed for so much more than his mediocre life, cutting out pictures of models in hopes of recreating the look that he received from the girl. He also showed his discontentment through what he said to his friend when he told him that he wanted to go to Fiji. This desire built up and Truman became less and less trusting of his world until the day came that he decided to sail away from his reality, where everything evolved around him.
I see this movie as an analogy of the story of the Garden of Eden in the Bible. Truman, playing Adam, is tempted to desire more than this perfect life he was given. Christof, the “creator” gave Truman a life without hurt, without pain, without most of the troubles that humans deal with throughout their lives and even though everyone Truman encountered were merely scripted acquaintances, he still had the ability to make his own decisions. So when the smile of the woman caught his attention, he desired for more, he, in a way, desired for the tree of knowledge of good and evil. He controlled the members of his society, like Adam controlled the beasts of the garden, but Christof controlled both the actors and Truman by his ability to change weather, time of day, what people said, and other means. So when the serpant, the woman from outside of Truman’s world, tempted him with a new reality, his curiosity took over and all he could think about was this idea of something different, something he was unable to have. I think that Truman’s decision to sail away from the city he grew up in symbolized Adam’s decision to climb up the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and eat the fruit. Once this occurred and Truman knew the truths that he was searching for, he realized that it was the bad parts of life that had been hidden from him along with free will. However, he too was not allowed to return to his “Garden of Eden” and must live his life away from his creator.