Homophobia in American Beauty

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I watched the movie American Beauty a couple of days ago and saw how homophobia might be a sign that the homophobic might be a homosexual. So I though I’d write about it. American Beauty centers on the last year of Lester Burnham’s life. Lester Burnham, played by Kevin Spacey, is married to Carolyn Burnham, played by Annette Betting, and their marriage is picture perfect on the outside, but the perfection is only superficially. Their marriage is based on projecting one image- a picture perfect suburbia lifestyle when it is in fact quite the opposite. Colonel Frank Fitts played by Chris Cooper, is the new neighbor who is presented as a homophobic man. He hates on and puts down the homosexual couple in the neighborhood constantly. So what…show more content…
Men fear humiliation or weakness because they always have to present everyone this image of being though, dominant and dependent; men despise anything that goes against these traditional views of masculinity. This traditional thoughts lead to homophobia. The media is constantly portraying men in a violent or dominant way in the movies, TV shows, etc. Asians are almost always portrayed as martial artist or violent criminals and Latinos as boxers, criminals or though gangsters. Ever since the Colonel moved in he shows this extreme disgust towards homosexuals around his neighborhood. He even shows this behavior towards his son Ricky when he becomes suspicious of his (Ricky’s) relationship with Lester. Probably when the Colonel was growing up, being gay was the worse and he tried to hide it from his parents and thought the army might help straighten him out and got married to try to appear like a normal man. At the end of the movie Frank believes he sees his son taking money from Lester for sexual favors and this results in Ricky leaving the house. Castañeda 3 The death of Lester Burnham is simply because he aroused his homophobic neighbor. Lester appears to be sexually available to men when he tells his neighbor: “Our (Lester’s and Carolyn’s) marriage is just for show…a commercial for how normal we are, when we’re anything but…” He (Frank) attempts to kiss Lester, proving his hidden desire for men. In a quick recap of the film: new neighbors move into
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