Friday, 11 February 2011
Pretentious or Thought Provoking?
Lover: Taken from IMDB
“The intention is so clear that everything else falls into place, perfectly. Kevin Spacey's suburban husband and father reminded me of his character in "The Ref" and that could only be a good thing. Annette Bening and her giggle works wonders here. Their marriage is a tabloid version of a "Who's Afraid To Virginia Woolf" Which means very close to someone we know. The biggest surprises in the film. besides the amazing dexterity of Sam Mendes at his first outing behind the camera, are West Bentley. Chris Cooper, Thora Brch and Allison Janney. As I'm writing this 8 years after its first release, the Oscars and the whole hullabaloo, I'm very surprised that West Bentley hasn't become a major star. He is amazing in "American Beauty" the complexities of his character are based on recognizable human stands, the hardest to face up to and I went where he went. Thora Birch is lovely as the object of his attention and the film, I believe, is here to say.”
I agree, American Beauty owes a LOT to the acting which is superb throughout!
Hater: Taken from IMDB
“The most overrated and pretentious movie in years. I'm amazed that this movie won all those oscars. It is a simple-minded film for simple-minded people. I'm sure all those people that don't understand movies like 2001 and VERTIGO will feel pretty comfortable with this tacky and unsubtle movie. Everything is a caricature. No hidden meanings. Everything is black or white. Every single actor goes over the top. All those "roses" are supposed to be an arty touch, but to me they are just another unimaginative way of presenting an idea. ORDINARY PEOPLE(1980) with Timothy Hutton, covered the same ground in a more powerful and subtle way. Sorry, no beauty here!”
I would not call American Beauty “simple-minded”, it has a simple premise and story but its all about the idea that run through it. It deals with everything from the mundane in life to seeing the beauty in everything. It has issue like homophobia, parenting, marital issues and drugs. To really appreciate American Beauty you really need to read into more otherwise it can seem a little pretentious.
What I thought:
There have been several great moments in cinema, films that mark these occasions are usually epic but not in the way you would think. These films are epic in their appeal not their size or budget, American Beauty is one great example. This film is quiet in its approach to some fairly big issues, the main one of course being modern Family living, albeit in an American setting. The rat race has made the father catatonic distancing him from a mother who has all but disowned him and a daughter crying for some sane conversation at the dinner table.
American Beauty is just as the title describes; a Beautiful film about taking every moment and not regretting a thing. It’s an incredibly thought provoking film that develops ideas about prejudice, youth and sex very few films can claim that.