Ms. Gokturk NAME: ________________________________________


The Truman Show (1998)


Character List

Christof – The Creator (Ed Harris)

Truman Burbanks – The Star (Jim Carrey)

Meryl – Truman’s Wife (Laura Linney)

Marlon – Truman’s Best Friend (Noah Emmerich)

Sylvie – Truman’s Love Interest (Natascha McElhone)

Truman’s Mother (Holland Taylor)

Truman’s Father (Brian Delate)

Setting: Seahaven – Truman’s World



Free Will




Knowledge / Unknowing




I. Personal Responses. You may use “I” and contractions. Before the film. Answer both.

1.       Describe your daily routine. Does it change for different days? Explain.

2.       Have you ever felt that you were not in control of your life? Why or why not? Explain.


II. Analytical Responses. Please use specifics from the film and discuss the film as if it were literature. Use the present tense and formal word choices. No contractions and no “I.” Label each response with the title provided. Answer FOUR. Write a well-developed paragraph for each (5-7 sentences). Please write in complete sentences aiming to use direct quotes and details from the film to support your responses. Please submit a single, final document to turnitin on the due date.

1.       Happy? Is Truman happy? Explain.

2.       Truman’s Routine. What is Truman’s routine? What makes Truman change his routine?

3.       Dramatic Irony. How is dramatic irony used in this film? Use examples.

4.       Reality? What hints have given in the film that leads Truman to realize that his life is not “real”? Discuss TWO.

5.       Relationship to World. In what ways does Truman’s relationship with his world differ from that of a normal person?

6.       Manipulation. In what ways does Christof manipulate Truman? Use specifics.

7.       Symbolism. Pick a symbol (an object or action) and discuss its importance. Please no Internet referencing. I have seen those all. Yawn.

8.       Woke. In what ways is it surprising that Truman has not “woken” up sooner?

9.       Real or F ake? The movie opens with the following statement from Christof. “We’ve become bored with watching actors give us phony emotions. We tired of pyrotechnics and special effects. While the world he (Truman) inhabits is, in some respects, counterfeit, there is nothing fake about Truman himself. No scripts, no cue cards. It isn’t always Shakespeare, but it’s genuine. It’s a life.” What does Christof mean when he states that “there is nothing fake about Truman himself”?

10.   Days. What is significant about 10, 909 days and 10, 913 days?

11.   Human Rights. How are Truman’s human rights violated?

12.   Allegory of the Cave. Compare Truman’s situation to the prisoner in “The Allegory of the Cave.”

13.   Oedipus. Compare Truman’s situation to Oedipus’.


Personal Responses. You may use “I” and contractions. After the film. Answer both.

1.       If you were Christof, what things would you have banned in Truman’s world and why? Discuss at least three things featured in the film.

2.       How is your life similar to Truman’s?