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American Beauty

  • 1999
  • R
  • 122min
  • 88%
  • 8.4 / 10

Lester Burnham’s life is on the brink of falling apart.: he and her wife Carolyn have fallen out of love, their daughter Janie is rebelling against them, his career is on the rocks as his employer is downsizing, and he is slowly getting succumbed to depression and frustration. But things begin to shift when he finds when himself falling head over heels with his daughter’s best friend. Lester becomes invigorated to change the course of his life and move past his mid-life crisis, so he takes it upon himself to amplify his lifestyle.

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movie facts

American Beauty was inspired by the 1992 Amy Fisher case. Dan Jinks and Bruce Cohen approached DreamWorks with the script in hopes of scoring a movie in 1997 after the stage play was rewritten to be more suitable for the big screen. DreamWorks ended up purchasing the script for $250,000 in a bidding war among many other companies. This was a success for DreamWorks, as at the 72nd Academy Awards in the following year, the film won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor (for Spacey), Best Original Screenplay, and Best Cinematography. The film also won or was nominated for a number of other awards from other award-giving organizations.


about the movie

American Beauty was released in 1999. This film was written by Alan Ball and directed by Sam Mendes in his debut as a director. The film features the talent of Kevin Spacey, Mena Suvari, Annette Bening Wes Bentley, Chris Cooper, and Allison Janney. It was originally written to be a stage play, however, it was realized it would not work as well in that format. The film was released September to positive reviews. Variety said, 'No other 1999 movie has benefited from such universal raves.' The filming budget was $15 million with worldwide box office sales reaching $356.3 million.