American Beauty

American Beauty was directed by Sam Mendes and released in 1999. It is a story about a father who is going through a midlife crisis and making everybody close to him want to see him dead. He sees what he is doing to everybody but all he wants to do now is live before he dies. One film technique used by Mendes in the film was surrealism to portray the sexual fantasies of Kevin Spacey(the father). One example of this was the bright red colors throughout the film. He used red rose petals to show what true beauty was. When the mother and father went to watch their daughter cheerleading was when Kevin Spacey first had his surrealistic fantasy. The entire crowd disappeared with all of the cheerleaders except for the one he was fantasizing about. As she opened her shirt a bunch of rose petals started flying all over the place. Another example is when he was laying in bed and looking at the ceiling. He started seeing the same girl lying on the ceiling covered with rose petals, but then his wife ends that scene when she catches him masturbating. The rose petals continue to appear whenever the girl is around and at times you are unable to tell if he is dreaming or if it is real. I thought that this film was incredible. I loved the story, the actors, everything. I thought that the movie was very funny at times but then it also showed the real seriousness of the whole thing. I felt that the way Mendes let you truly get into Kevin Spaceys head made the movie so much better. The surrealistic dreams may have seemed weird at times but it gave you a better perspective of everything going on in his life. …

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