Pleasantville vs. The Giver Analysis

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In the movie, Pleasantville, and in the book, The Giver, there are many different similarities and differences. One similarity is that the communities are portrayed as utopias but in reality are actually dystopias. Another similarity is the weather and the fact that it’s extremely ideal. Also, in both the movie and in the book the communities have no understanding of sex or sexual feelings. However, in the book The Giver the people in the community are capable of these feelings, but they suppress them with a pill.

On the other hand, in the movie there is no such thing as sexual feelings until Bud and Mary-Sue show up in Pleasantville and show the people what life is really all about. Some additional differences include: when Pleasantville’s weather changes and black and white change into color. Although there are many similarities of both communities the differences of both communities makes them both very different. There are several differences between Pleasantville and The Giver.

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To begin with, in the movie Pleasantville, everything starts changing color because the people of the community are standing up for what they think is right and for what they believe in. The people of the community are standing up for what’s right by listening to wild music, painting colorful pictures on brick walls and glass windows, also Betty-Sue’s not cooking for her husband, and the teenagers are having open relationships etc… In The Giver, only certain people are able to see the different colors of their community. The Giver and the Receiver of memories are the only ones able to see all the different colors of their community.

Also in The Giver they are capable of having feelings but their feelings are held back by a pill. In The Giver, Jonas told his parents about a dream he had about Fiona not wanting to get into the tub of water, Jonas’ mother told Jonas that he was ready for the pill (the pill is a treatment for sexual feelings which are called “stirrings”) (Lowry 37). On the contrary, Pleasantville ends up being able to showing feeling and have feelings because David and Mary-Sue come to their community and Mary-Sue corrupts their society.

By showing the people that there is more to life than having dinner ready before the husband comes home, Mary-Sue also shows them that you can show people that you care about them and love them by kissing, holding hands, having sex etc… As well as differences between The Giver and Pleasantville there are also some similarities. A similarity that The Giver and Pleasantville have is that both communities have no knowledge of what sex is or what sexual feelings are but that changes later on in the movie.

In addition, “The Giver” and “Pleasantville” communities are portrayed as a utopian society because everything seems perfect, everyone looks the same, everyone seems to talk the same and there is no fighting etc… Even though, both The Giver and Pleasantville are portrayed as utopias they are soon found out to be dystopian societies because Jonas finds out what it is like to gain knowledge about terrible things from the past and Pleasantville’s communities soon finds out what it is like to have personal freedoms, love for people and color when Bud and Mary-Sue come to Pleasantville.

Also both communities don’t have any kind of weather change there is never snow, rain, lightning, wind, tornados etc. The Giver and Pleasantville have differences and similarities, but send the same message which is not everything is as perfect as it seems. Although both communities send the same message they are very different in a way that both communities don’t end up having a clear idea of what is to come of having no perfectness of their communities.

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Pleasantville vs. The Giver Analysis. (2016, Nov 25). Retrieved from

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