Look closer.

Got around to watching American Beauty, extremely impressed with virtually the whole film – great writing, brilliant cast, a fantastic combination of humor and pathos, pretty much excellent from start to finish. Kevin Spacey of course delivers an excellent performance, but having recently watched Seven and The Usual Suspects, it’s his versatility that is really incredible.

The set design, camera angles and overall cinematography deserve mention, with some excellent, minimalist use of sparse sets, recurring colour themes and environment to reinforce the characters’ emotions. In particular Rickey’s bedroom set conveys the character’s background clearly. And of course there’s the recurring rose-petal theme (and, ahem, other uses of the same red colour) which manages to be effective without ever seeming light-hearted or flippant.

The commentary track pointed out a lovely little detail – the film’s tagline (‘look closer’) is written on a post card pinned to the wall of Lester’s cubicle.

Posted Monday, March 17th, 2008 under films.

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