American Beauty Essay

1238 words - 5 pages

1a) Jane is an angry, insecure, confused teenage girl who resents her parents. She is a more reserved person and is trying to find her way through her early life. As most typical American middle class teenager, she values her appearance more than anything; a jealous individual, though she may be a reserved individual, her feelings of jealousy are made apparent throughout the movie and seem to be a root to her anger. Due to her insecurities she doesn’t consider herself attractive enough and is considering going through breast augmentation surgery. Jane seems to be seeking outside approval be it from anyone due to the parental neglect that she faces as well as the envy she feels towards her, “prettier” amateur model, best friend Angela. Jane’s idea of the American dream is to look like Angela and to live a financially comfortable life, however not be as sad as her parents; she doesn’t know what happiness is. Moreover, it is made apparent that Jane used to be close with her father at one point; however, her relationship with Lester has dwindled away. Though what infuriates Jane is the fact that her father has fallen for her Angela, who Lester gives more attention to than his own daughter. “JANE
I need a father who's a role model, not some horny geek-boy who's gonna spray his shorts whenever I bring a girlfriend home from school. What a lame-o. Somebody really should put him out of his misery.”

1b) Jane’s character strengthens by the end of the movie. Developing her relationship with Ricky changes her gradually her gloomy mood as he actually pays attention to her and wants to greater know who she is. Meanwhile, the mysterious character, Ricky Fitts, fascinates her. She feels attracted towards him because of complex views on the world around him as well as his sensitive side and begins and the two both find an understanding of beauty and happiness when together. This feeling of happiness cause the two to plan to run away and create a new life for themselves, away from their domestic troubles. Moreover, by the end of the movie, Jane is no longer jealous of Angela, for a few reasons. She no longer envy’s Angela’s looks, popularity and life style due to the fact that she has found happiness in her relationship with Ricky. In addition to her happiness, Jane realizes that Angela is so average and boring, there is truly nothing to admire about her other than the fact that she meets the criteria of what is demeaned desirable or beautiful in their social setting.
“ANGELA Jane! He is a freak!
Well, then so am I! And we'll alwaysbe freaks and we'll never be like other people. And you'll never be a freak because you're just too perfect.
Oh, yeah? Well, at least I'm not ugly.
 Yes, you are. And you're boring. And you're totally ordinary. And you know it.”
• What happened between Jane and Lester, that caused them to distance their father-daughter relationship?
• Is it a coincidence that both Lester and Jane easily befriend Ricky? Do...

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