American Beauty, starring Kevin Spacey, is easily one of my favorite films and I would recommend it to any film fanatic. Released in 1999, the film received 5 Academy Awards and was a box office success despite its initial limited run in theaters. What really sets American Beauty apart from other dramas of the time is the down to earth portrayal of its characters. Every character in the film has clear flaws and every character is searching for more out of life. The film does an excellent job of illustrating how easy it is to feel isolated and alone when in reality everyone is united in their search for acceptance and happiness.
The plot follows Lester Burnham, who in his middle age has began to feel discontent with his life. His wife and daughter have little respect for him and he is isn’t any better off at work, where he writes for a magazine. When a corporate overhaul of the company threatens his job, he decides to blackmail one of the executives, receiving a large “severance bonus” and walking away with his head held high.
Lester’s decision to pull a fast one on his employers marks a turning point in his life, and he sets out to rekindle his passion for living. The rest of the film follows his antics as he does everything he can to get in touch with his youth, going so far as to get hired at a burger joint just to feel young again.
The sad news is that American Beauty isn’t currently on any streaming services (that I’m aware of). But it’s not all bad news! I feel inclined to inform you that if you find yourself wanting to watch this movie, we almost always have a copy in stock. So roll in to your nearest Bookmans, head over to the drama section and find your very own copy today!
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