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American Beauty (Academy Awards Edition)

4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (780 customer reviews)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kevin Spacey at his best Jan. 10 2011
By Steven Aldersley TOP 50 REVIEWER
American Beauty BD Sapphire Series
Cast: Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening, Chris Cooper, Thora Birch, Wes Bentley, Mena Suvari
Director: Sam Mendes
Paramount Pictures | 1999 | 122m | Rated R |

MPEG-4 AVC | 1080p | 2.35:1

English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
French, Portuguese, Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
English: Dolby Digital 2.0

English, English SDH, French, Portuguese, Spanish

Single 50GB Blu-ray disc, region free

American Beauty won Oscars for actor in a leading role (Kevin Spacey), cinematography (Conrad L. Hall), director (Sam Mendes), screenplay (Alan Ball) and best picture (Bruce Cohen and Dan Jinks). It's a weird tale told in an unusual way.

We learn during the opening narration that our protagonist, Lester Burnham (Spacey), is going to die. The events leading up to his eventual death are funny, moving, sad and unpredictable. Burnham is a pathetic character entering a mid-life crisis and the film shows how his character changes, as well as the lives of the people around him. There is a significant amount of character development in this story.

It's not strictly a comedy, but it's full of dark humor that is hard to predict. In short, it's the funniest kind of humor. If you found Fargo and Inglourious Basterds amusing, you'll probably laugh at this too.

Burnham changes his life by becoming more assertive and ceasing to care what other people might think. This catalyst for this rebellion is a meeting with his new neighbor, Ricky Fitts (Wes Bentley) who gets high with him before quitting his job on the spot.

The film contains nudity, violence, bad language, drug use and smoking, so the R-rating is warranted.
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Okay, so I know I’m about 15 years late on watching this movie, don’t hate me…I was only 8 when it first came out after all. Well, I’m 22 now and it’s always better late than never right? I had heard about this movie many times, but I never really knew what it was about. I was at work and a colleague of mine was talking about how she just re-watched it and forgot how good it was. When I confessed that I had never seen it before, she gave me one of those looks like, “You’re joking right?” The next day she brought me her copy of the DVD for me to borrow!

I popped in the DVD without even reading what the film was about. The first scene included a song that brought back memories for me as my sister used it for her first competitive solo dance routine. We are introduced to Lester Burnham played by Kevin Spacey, who is kind of a pushover. He decides he’s had enough and is no longer going to let his wife/daughter/boss/whoever run his life anymore. The film started off with a kind of satirical humour which I liked a lot. Kevin Spacy has the perfect dry sense of humour which of course is my favourite kind. Little did I know that about half way through, things started taking a dark turn.

I love when movies have a dark theme to them, it was so sudden in this film though which made me like it that much more. To have me laughing at the beginning to suddenly concerned for the characters was a different feeling for me that I wasn’t used to from a film. Characters start breaking and revealing more about themselves.

This movie was so perfect for me, I had to buy my own copy. It was real and dark and satirical and everything that I love in a film.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just A Plastic Bag Blowin In The Wind . . . . Dec 29 2013
I feel bad for people who don't get this film! And if you don't appreciate the "beauty" in the scenes where the plastic bag is blowing in circles in the wind ( and the narration that accompanies them ), in my view, you don't get what this movie is about.

Some people spend much of their lives pursuing the kind of beauty that is central to the theme of this film. They may remember it solely from their childhood, or perhaps they recovered it once, possibly in their early adult years, but then lost it again.

Kevin Spacey's narration during the final scenes of this movie rang especially true for me. Because if you do get this intense appreciation for beauty back ( see the Bill Murray character at the end of Groundhog Day ), you may also discover that you've found an odd, and incredibly optimistic, outlook towards the prospect of dying; seeing death as a kind of liberation from the limitations of this life.

A few years ago, while down near the lakeshore in Kingston, Ontario, I had the opportunity ( due to favourable winds and the unusual architecture of a building ) to watch a plastic bag blowing in circles in the wind. The scene was clearly reminiscent of the one from this film, and I had an uncanny feeling that God was watching me. And that everything was exactly the way it was supposed to be.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a thing of beauty Dec 24 2009
By mocha
I love this movie. It doesn't get any better than this, especially for boomers. What happens when the American Dream is not enough, when things like happiness, love, fulfillment, have become lost along the way? Sometimes, you have to take a step backwards in order to move forward. This movie is a slice of life look at an ordinary hero's journey toward authentication and fulfillment, and how it affects those around him. Each of the characters is wonderfully drawn and executed, as are all aspects of "American Beauty". This movie is thing of beauty.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars dvd
very good dvd and excellent film too I have senne it a couple of years ago and just love it again
Published 3 months ago by Claude Couillard
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic
A Classic. Superb acting all around, but especially by kevin spacey and his daughter's boyfriend. Fascinating examination of modern life.
Published 3 months ago by P PIDDINGTON
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic! Love it, see it or see it again!
The character's relationships, the what you see is not what you'll get later in the movie, more than one reason to love this movie.
Published 4 months ago by Martin Gendron
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
It was such a good relatable film with a dramatic heartfelt ending. The disc itself came in good condition. I would recommend seeing it
Published 8 months ago by Nicole
5.0 out of 5 stars Look Closer
Kevin Spacey is brilliant, and this movie is the capstone of his nineties career. Well acted, well written, and the overall message hits hard. Amazing.
Published 18 months ago by Jesse
5.0 out of 5 stars American Beauty
dear sir, the disc is in good shape and the movie was shown with excellent picture and great sound! Gus
Published on Nov. 21 2011 by gus
5.0 out of 5 stars Take a look!
If I had to name one american movie that is an example of great cinema done during the nineties, one movie that manages to stand out from the lot, both artistically and... Read more
Published on Nov. 19 2010 by Omnes
1.0 out of 5 stars An amazing film
I thought this movie was awful. It's amazing to me how anyone could like this. I couldn't wait for it to be over. Read more
Published on July 16 2004 by J. Keeton
On the surface, this stunner from Sam Mendes is such a relentlessly bleak look at the vacuity of the supposed "American Dream" that viewers may just turn off to it en... Read more
Published on July 16 2004 by Shashank Tripathi
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