What if you could live your life in a movie or television show? What would that be like? What if you didn't know your life was a television show? That everything that happens to you is manipulated by people in a control room. From the weather, to your girlfriend, even to your father's death. Nothing is real. You can't leave the town you grew up in, your best friend and wife are actors, as are every other person you come in contact with or see across the street. For Truman Burbank (Jim Carrey; Ace Ventura: Pet Detective) that is exactly the ignorance he lives in 24/7, 365 days a year. And the world watches his life on television without him knowing.
Truman has always had a good life and never really questioned it. However, lately, strange things have been happening. He finds an object that essentially fell out of the sky and looks like a light kit. Then his father is suddenly alive and in front of him, finally, as he is trying to evade a man that has been following him, he sees people "behind the scenes" tucked behind what is supposed to be an elevator door. All of these occurrences have Truman questioning everything in his life and devising a plan to "escape" as the world watches transfixed to their television screens.
The role was a departure for Carrey who was known for his goofy, comedic roles. Truman was contemplative, displaying a range of emotions from elation to sadness and longing and Carrey pulls all of it off very well. Ed Harris (Apollo 13) portrays Christof, the creator and puppet master of The Truman Show. His commanding presence on screen has seen him playing characters in authoritative positions numerous times and this is no exception. Supporting cast, including Laura Linney (The Big C) and Holland Taylor (Two and a Half Men) as Truman's wife and mother respectively, are all actors playing actors on a tv show and they are unobtrusive for the most part.
In honor of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the film's release, Paramount Pictures is making the movie available in 4K for the first time and the upgrade is readily apparent. The 2160p resolution is a game changer in terms of the visual aspects. Colors are brighter, and details are much more defined. However, while the Dolby Atmos audio is crisp and fidelity and clarity are very good, the upgrade isn't a necessity. There isn't that much in terms of dialogue and ambient sound that warrant an upgrade but I suppose it is a double edge sword in that if Paramount had not upgraded the audio along with the video, people would have probably negatively questioned that decision.
The biggest disappointment with this release, however, is the lack of any new extras. The few extras included are housed on the Blu-ray Disc and the material is all previously released. They are: How's It Going to End? The Making of The Truman Show. Faux Finishing, The Visual Effects of The Truman Show, Deleted Scenes, Photo Gallery, Theatrical Trailers, and TV Spots.
There is a reason The Truman Show was nominated for multiple awards including three Oscars. It is well written and cast and offers audiences something new in place of the recycled plots so often presented in theaters. Director Peter Weir (Dead Poets Society) also does a terrific job helming this ship, offering shots and angles that help the audience feel the visuals he is presenting.
The Truman Show is one of those films that will be remembered for quite some time and will most likely always be included on lists of some of the best movies ever made. It showcased Jim Carrey's versatility as an actor and was an award-nominated role for Ed Harris.
It is well put together and entertaining and should endure for at least another twenty-five years,