American Beauty Introduction American Beauty is a drama film which has been released in 1999. This film is written by Alan Ball, and it has been directed by Sam Mendes. The major character of this film has been performed by Kevin Spacey as Lester Burnham…
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This drama film is the representation of all those problems which are significantly associated with the American Dream, especially for the middle economic class. It is a remarkable portrayal of tensions in the life of middle class men in order to thrive for better living. There is another sufficient illumination which is efficiently presented by Medes through his direction. This issue is related to the difference is between the conventional conception of beauty in concordance with the American Dream and the real concept of beauty which leads an individual towards happiness rather than mere pleasure. This paper is focused on describing the myth of beauty in the conventional concept which can lead to the illusion of happiness; however, it is a disturbing shift from happiness to misery. This will be described by the analysis of the last scene of Lester in this film in terms of cinematography and mise-en-scene. Description The scene begins in the kitchen where Angela and Lester are in a conversation right after Angela eats something. After some general dialogues about food and unusual incident occurred between them, Lester asks Angela about his daughter Jane. He asks that how is she? Is she happy or miserable? On which Angela replies that Jane is satisfied, and she is in love with Ricky. Lester acts in a calm manner and this answer of Angela brings a smile on his face. This is followed by Angela’s question as she asks Lester about how is he? Lester gently tells Angela that he has not being asked any of such questions regarding his self for a long time. He further tells Angela after a significant pause that he is high. Angela excuses for going to the bathroom and leaves (Spacey, Bening and Birch 01:48:58-01:51:47). The scene continues with Lester in the frame, and he smiles again and repeats that he is high. After repeating his dialogue, he smiles and looks to the left side. Lester moves towards left as the shot cuts and a larger frame covers Lester’s motion towards the photo. Lester picks that photo frame in his hands and starts to look at it while walking towards the dining table, and he sits on a chair (Spacey, Bening and Birch 01:48:58-01:51:47). Lester keeps on staring at the photo ahead of which a flower vase is placed with red roses in it. The short cuts and shifts towards the photo in which Lester and Carolyn (Lester’s wife) and preadolescent Jane are present. In the photo, the whole family seems to be happy. The shot shifts in 180 degree camera angle, framing Lester’s face and he delivers his dialogues. He says, “Man o man” and the shot shifts towards the left shoulder framing his face in a wide angle from the left shoulder (Spacey, Bening and Birch 01:48:58-01:51:47). He repeats his dialogue and a nozzle of a gun comes into the frame from the right side. The scene follows as the camera pans towards the left side covering the photo and the vase with the red roses in motion. The camera stops on the white wall opposite to Lester's direction, and the sound of a gunshot takes place with Lester’s blood sprayed on the wall. The scene ends on the wall on which Lester’s blood drops down in a downwards flow (Spacey, Bening and Birch 01:48:58-01:51:47). Cinematography This scene of the American drama film American Beauty, which has been described in the previous heading, is one of the most significant scenes of the film. In
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The primary crux of the movie American Beauty could be traced in the existential crisis faced by the main character in the movie that is Lester Burnham. Throughout the movie, the main character Lester Burnham struggles to seek and find out the meaning of his life in a personal and intimate context.
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Movie Review: American Beauty. In his work, How Movies Helped Save My Soul, Higgins challenged us to examine a movie or film for underlying issues that are eating at our subconscious, and sometimes even conscious, psyche. We tend to observe the world around us from a distance, keeping as far away from unpleasant circumstances as can comfortably be.
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