The Truman Show Essay Research Paper — страница 3

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these people wronged him. Are we morally responsible and accountable for the well-being and lives of those who wrong us? True Christians are, for instance. Moreover, most of us, most of the time, find ourselves in situations which we did not help mould by our decisions. We are unwillingly cast into the world. We do not provide prior consent to being born. This fundamental decision is made for us, forced upon us. This pattern persists throughout our childhood and adolescence: decisions are made elsewhere by others and influence our lives profoundly. As adults we are the objects ? often the victims ? of the decisions of corrupt politicians, mad scientists, megalomaniac media barons, gung-ho generals and demented artists. This world is not of our making and our ability to shape and

influence it is very limited and rather illusory. We live in our own "Truman Show". Does this mean that we are not morally responsible for others? We are morally responsible even if we did not choose the circumstances and the parameters and characteristics of the universe that we inhabit. The Swedish Count Wallenberg imperilled his life (and lost it) smuggling hunted Jews out of Nazi occupied Europe. He did not choose, or helped to shape Nazi Europe. It was the brainchild of the deranged Director Hitler. Having found himself an unwilling participant in Hitler?s horror show, Wallenberg did not turn his back and opted out. He remained within the bloody and horrific set and did his best. Truman should have done the same. Jesus said that he should have loved his enemies. He

should have felt and acted with responsibility towards his fellow human beings, even towards those who wronged him greatly. But this may be an inhuman demand. Such forgiveness and magnanimity are the reserve of God. And the fact that Truman?s tormentors did not see themselves as such and believed that they were acting in his best interests and that they were catering to his every need ? does not absolve them from their crimes. Truman should have maintained a fine balance between his responsibility to the show, its creators and its viewers and his natural drive to get back at his tormentors. The source of the dilemma (which led to his act of choosing) is that the two groups overlap. Truman found himself in the impossible position of being the sole guarantor of the well-being and

lives of his tormentors. To put the question in sharper relief: are we morally obliged to save the life and livelihood of someone who greatly wronged us? Or is vengeance justified in such a case? A very problematic figure in this respect is that of Truman?s best and childhood friend. They grew up together, shared secrets, emotions and adventures. Yet he lies to Truman constantly and under the Director?s instructions. Everything he says is part of a script. It is this disinformation that convinces us that he is not Truman?s true friend. A real friend is expected, above all, to provide us with full and true information and, thereby, to enhance our ability to choose. Truman?s true love in the Show tried to do it. She paid the price: she was ousted from the show. But she tried to

provide Truman with a choice. It is not sufficient to say the right things and make the right moves. Inner drive and motivation are required and the willingness to take risks (such as the risk of providing Truman with full information about his condition). All the actors who played Truman?s parents, loving wife, friends and colleagues, miserably failed on this score. It is in this mimicry that the philosophical key to the whole movie rests. A Utopia cannot be faked. Captain Nemo?s utopian underwater city was a real Utopia because everyone knew everything about it. People were given a choice (though an irreversible and irrevocable one). They chose to become lifetime members of the reclusive Captain?s colony and to abide by its (overly rational) rules. The Utopia came closest to

extinction when a group of stray survivors of a maritime accident were imprisoned in it against their expressed will. In the absence of choice, no utopia can exist. In the absence of full, timely and accurate information, no choice can exist. Actually, the availability of choice is so crucial that even when it is prevented by nature itself ? and not by the designs of more or less sinister or monomaniac people ? there can be no Utopia. In H.G. Wells? book "The Time Machine", the hero wanders off to the third millennium only to come across a peaceful Utopia. Its members are immortal, don?t have to work, or think in order to survive. Sophisticated machines take care of all their needs. No one forbids them to make choices. There simply is no need to make them. So the Utopia