The Truman Show
As a movie night and discussion for parents with their teens
Triggers meaningful dialogue on the power of deception
- Rent or purchase The Truman Show. (Rated PG for language)
- Like most films, The Truman Show includes offensive language and innuendo. You might consider buying a service such as clearplay.com that edits out language and offensive scenes.
- Pop some popcorn and have the discussion guide on the next page ready.
Be up front with your teen, explaining that you want to watch the film to discuss its themes from a Christian perspective. Don’t use this as an occasion to teach, but to enjoy some good dialogue. You probably won’t agree on everything, which is fine. Just discussing the themes can strengthen your relationship and stretch critical thinking skills.
Truman (played by Jim Carrey) is unaware that he is living on a giant television set and his every action is being broadcast to the world. Every person in his life is an actor or actress, every scene a prop, every discussion a scripted set-up to see how he will respond. As Truman begins to realize that there is something wrong with his world he seeks to discover whether or not there is a world beyond the one in which he is trapped. Another key character is the producer of the Truman show (played by Ed Harris) who manipulates Truman’s surroundings to make him think it is reality—when in fact it is all a grand deception.
Alternate asking one another the questions that follow. Once you have shared your own thoughts, reference the Think about It notes below.
- How does Christof mirror what we know of Lucifer? (See A)
- In what ways are we like Truman? (See B)
- Read Jesus’ words in John 8:44 and then John 8:32. What did you observe in this film reflecting these realities? (See C)
Think About It
- Christof manipulates Truman into believing and living a lie.
- We sense that there is a reality beyond our immediate experience, and that there is more to reality than what we see. But we must overcome the obstacles of deception to reach our true home.
- In a military campaign, the element of surprise gives a major advantage. Spiritual warfare is the same since those who are tempted, abused or oppressed know it - but the deceived do not know it. Deception is our enemy’s primary weapon used to gain a strategic advantage in our lives. We can learn from Truman by refusing to suppress the suspicion that we are made for more and by following clues that point us toward our true purpose – living what Jesus called “life to the full.”
© 2007 Inkling Innovations