American Beauty
Want to See
Not Interested
Rate it ½ star
Rate it 1 star
Rate it 1½ stars
Rate it 2 stars
Rate it 2½ stars
Rate it 3 stars
Rate it 3½ stars
Rate it 4 stars
Rate it 4½ stars
Rate it 5 stars

Available Online

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Kevin Spacey gives the performance of his life."
‑ Rex Reed, New York Observer
"[The filmmakers'] attacks on real-estate agents, corporate America and suburbia aren't so much shooting fish in a barrel as they are shooting fish in a shallow dish."
‑ Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel
"Mendes manages to give individuality and distinction to some extremely familiar material."
‑ Philip French, Observer [UK]
"Beauty is never less than fascinating and always visually stunning."
‑ Leah Rozen, People Magazine
"American Beauty is a profoundly satisfying piece of cinema which works its way inside you, grabs hold of your heart and simply refuses to let go."
‑ , Total Film
"Alan Ball's script is a terrific piece of material, and Mendes responds directly to its subversive, provocative vision of a curdled American Dream."
‑ John Hartl, Seattle Times
"Boldly challenging our sympathies, [Lester] somehow wins them because, to borrow a phrase, he's a man in full."
‑ Richard Schickel, TIME Magazine
"Disturbing, bleak, thought-provoking."
‑ David Sterritt, Christian Science Monitor
"British theatre director Sam Mendes made an astonishing film debut with this sublime black comedy about midlife crises."
‑ Lorien Haynes, Radio Times
"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."
‑ Blake Howard, 2UE That Movie Show
"American Beauty approaches a manic, almost cartoonish edge without falling over. Both Spacey and Bening use extraordinary comic timing to bring these very sad, lost characters to life."
‑ Jami Bernard, New York Daily News
"The hairpin turns from farce to melodrama, from satire to bathos, are fresh and deftly navigated, but almost every one of the underlying attitudes is smug and easy."
‑ David Edelstein, Slate
"Flaws and all, this is intelligent, exhilarating, effervescent film-making, and a remarkable debut from Sam Mendes."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"In their scathing portrayal of middle-class anxiety, screenwriter Alan Ball and director Sam Mendes create an average Joe determined to unearth the carefully buried truths of his life."
‑ Serena Donadoni, Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
"Cripplingly broad, with network-sitcom beats dressed in R-rated threads... [endorses] a particularly adolescent male point of view."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
More reviews for American Beauty on Rotten Tomatoes

More Like This