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Word Count: 728
American Beauty This film written by Alan Ball and directed by Sam Mendes was released in 1999 It won many awards including the Academy award for best picture although it was and still is very controversial The movie portrays the American suburbanite family in a bleak and dismal light and dares to discuss off-limit intense topics dealing with the American life This film requires insightful reflection and analysis in order to understand its profound significance and multifaceted layers While many topics are explored and uncovered in the film several dominant themes occur in American Beauty which are of great consequence The first is the idea of looking closer This recurring aspect of the film urges the audience to see that things are not as they appear on the surface Examples include the seemingly perfect but actually dysfunctional family the suggestion that someone else killed Lester the fact that Angela turned out to be a virgin though she acted quite unvirginal and the discovery that the homophobic Colonel is gay The director and screenwriter purposefully made occurrences have an incredibly different outcome than perceived The truth or beauty itself may be found in a place where a person never expected to find it like in a plastic bag floating the filmmaker tries to rid the audience of its preconceived notions about truth and beauty which is crucial in understanding the next theme about beauty Beauty is of course another omnipresent significant theme in American Beauty The filmmmaker uses the film to ask questions about beauty to the American public such as what is beauty where can it be found how is it achieved and so on Each character has a dissimilar viewpoint regarding these questions about beauty They each have their own idea or image of what is beautiful The way each character defines beauty ultimately defines the characters themselves in the film For example Rickys sense of what is beautiful makes him
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