American beauty famous American Dream.

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 American beauty famous American Dream.

Even more surprising, American Beauty comes from Dreamworks, who has specialized in promoting politically correct values in such films as , Prince of Egypt, and The Peacemaker, among others. This new production is not only an important change of artistic hats, but also an audacious bet, knowing that the film denigrates what the other studio productions extol. It’s to their credit. The English director, Sam Mendes, for whom this is his first film, is a theater renegade who made his mark with The Blue Room, the sulfurous play with Nicole Kidman, the play that inspired the film , and the Broadway adaptation of Cabaret.

Kevin Spacey plays the especially pathetic father of a family whose mid-life crisis will suddenly wake him. This crisis, however, is not the subject of the film. On the contrary, it’s the catalyst that will explode into their lives and allow the film to strip away several layers of American society. In fact, the film denounces the hypocrisy of a society obsessed with an outer appearance of success but is eaten away by frustration on the inside, thus destroying a certain American Dream. Here, Puritanism, patriotism, empowerment, and corporate America will not be spared

The film starts off strongly, revealing Kevin Spacey in the shower masturbating, explaining that this is the high point of his day. The film immediately puts a finger on his sexual frustration. Married and a father, the character has not had sex in some time with his wife (Annette Bening), who is more obsessed with decorating her house. Under the appearance of marital happiness lies a more serious problem. This frustration pushes the character to fantasize about his daughter’s classmate, which will trigger him to begin working out to become sexier and seduce her. The young girl incarnates this American beauty symbolized by fresh rose petals (in Spacey’s fantasies) contrasted with the planted rosebushes in his wife’s garden whose rigid beauty testifies to an absence of sexual desire for his wife. American Beauty denounces this America that, under a guise of Puritanism, commits the irreproachable, like family fathers chasing after young girls. Sexual frustration touches several other characters. Annette Bening will go find satisfaction elsewhere, while his neighbor’s homophobia seems to be a result of frustration tied to a puritanical education where these tendencies are not accepted.

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The film attacks patriotism next. The neighbor, a retired colonel, guards his family with an iron grip, having made his wife a quasi zombie and doesn’t hesitate to raise his son on the correct path with a few punches. This discipline is so severe that his son, by reaction, is a drug dealer. The fact that the father has the family watch war movies starring Ronald Reagan is a direct allusion to a conservative America. But where the goes further is with denunciation of rampant fascism of exaggerated patriotism and militarist culture. The highlight of the colonel’s military artifact collection ...

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