American Beauty was a deserving best picture and Lester's rich existential journey and social commentary of modern America peels away the inauthentic and superficial to reveal the epic allure in a bleak suburbia.
The flaws that exist in American Beauty are effortlessly overcome by a cast that blossoms. Spacey in particular exhibits a rare wit and gravitas with Lester's weary frowns and cutting smirks, proving his mettle in this career peak performance.
As the latest mainstream movie symptom of our premillennial malaise, American Beauty is so brilliantly acted, written, directed and visualized that for all its despondency and despair, it is a lot of fun.
Brit Sam Mendes makes an impressive directorial debut with a glossy, well-acted satire of the American burbs, a theatrically stylized meditation that combines the zeitgeist of 1950s Eisnehower with that of 1990s Clinton.