Miss All American Beauty Essay

1773 words - 8 pages

An American Beauty rose, as known as Miss All- American Beauty is a fragrant hybrid tea rose, capable of lasting long as a cut flower. The rose is known as America’s national flower. Unfortunately it is prone to decaying and rusting (Jo). In Sam Mendes’ award- winning film American Beauty, these roses can be found throughout. Besides the roses, each character involved is chasing after their version of American beauty. The film’s title is appropriate, it is the reason that the whole plot revolves around the characters’ form of American beauty. The American beauty roses are seen in various scenes as they stand out to viewers as they appear in specific scenes. As the plot unfolds, the viewer can take notice that just as these beautiful roses are prone to decay; the characters’ own American beauties are prone to being just illusions, easily destroyed. A man of discipline, Col. Fitts has an unexpected role within the film. His form of American beauty is a military family. After serving the country, he wants to relocate his family into suburbia and lead an ideal family life. Everything becomes out of hand as soon as the Fitts family moves in. Col. Fitts’ neighbors are the Burnham family and partners Jim Olmeyer and Jim Berkley. Upon the Fitts’ move in the homosexual neighbors, reach out and welcome the Fitts’ to the neighborhood. Col. Fitts is at first not excited for the fact that someone is at their house, but gets even more frustrated when they introduce themselves as partners. Through most of the film, the Col. is heard muttering homosexual slurs, and makes the viewer think that he is homophobic. During the scene where Ricky and his father are in the car, Ricky expresses some horrible statements about homosexuals. Col. Fitts reacts shocked at first, but then quickly snaps back and backs up Ricky’s comments. This scene raises a question, why did Col. Fitts react like that? Towards the end of the film, Col. Fitts notices Ricky and his neighbor through a window, without a clear view he misinterprets what he sees and in distraught accuses Ricky of providing sexual services to Lester, and kicks him out. Still in disbelief and confusion, Col. Fitts makes his way to Lester’s garage where he is working out. This interaction between them is unexpected. Lester explains how his wife is out sleeping with another man, and frankly he does not care, because in reality their whole marriage is just for show. Col. Fitts misinterprets Lester’s confession, and kisses him. Once Lester tells him that he got the wrong idea, Col. Fitts is completely ashamed and goes home. Col. Fitts kept pushing himself away from his feelings. His marriage that he tries to keep up is not bringing both him and his wife happiness, because he does not want a female in his life (Deschler). His American beauty is an illusion, a cover up for what he fears: his emotions. Kevin Jennings in his piece “American Dream” explained, “but there were some things about myself I could not escape...

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