All member reviews for American Beauty

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

Common Sense Media says

Powerful acting, great story, but far too mature for kids.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

Users say

(out of 30 reviews)
AGE
15
QUALITY
 
Review this title!
Adult Written bycba1942 April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Genius

I think this is one of the most brilliant films I have ever had the pleasure of watching. It is not for weak minded audiences and I recommend that parents do not show it to young children for obvious reasons. The story line is engaging, the acting is spectacular, and the casting is perfect. Spacey proves to be an excellent choice for Lester and Bening is wonderful as Carolyn. Overall I give this film the highest of ratings and place it in the must see category for every movie fan.
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Freaky and Potentialy Life Changing

I saw this movie and was in shock for days, it is definitely not for kids my age, but it is really an AMAZING movie. AMAZAING. I don't want to say to much, but the point of the movie is the dysfunctionality (is that a word?) of american families, so almost everything is wrong here, but that's the point. If you are over 15 GO WATCH THIS NOW.
Adult Written bykalleyeope April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 
Teen, 15 years old Written by80sfan8 April 23, 2012
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

I don't get what the big deal is.

I don't know why CSM rated it 17 and I don't get why some people rate it not for kids. Sure it has nudity, but it wasn't done in a sexual way. I'll admit that the dialogue was kind of raunchy but I've heard people say worse stuff at school. I'll get to the point and say that it's a great movie and it's nothing a mature teen can't handle.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Adult Written bywonder dove February 8, 2013
AGE
17
QUALITY
 

Parents beware!

One of my favorite movies but certainly not for kids! I saw this when I was 12 and didn't fully understand it, it has a lot of strong situations that dysfunctional families go through. I have to say though, the acting is amazing! Exquisitely done by Annette Bening (Carolyn), Kevin Spacey (Lester) and Thora Birch (Jane). Their lives from the outside seem perfect but on the inside, they are dying. Their relationships with one another are absent and cold, they all seem like they need a big hug. I loved most of the characters, each of them had something to like about or something sincere about them. Even their friends seemed disoriented, especially Jane's best friend Angela (played by Mena Suvari) who not only lies too much to make herself look better than Jane but is also completely delusional. Lester has an obsession with her because she leads him on, which totally sickens Jane and draws her even more apart from her dad. Overall, the story is really engaging. Violence has some beating of a teen boy by his strict father, guns...including as a sport at a shooting range, a graphic murder with gore and a woman preparing to kill someone. A girl gets slapped. Lots of strong arguments between friends and families. TONS of sexual content includes nudity where a teen girl exposes her breasts for her boyfriend. A wild sex scene in a motel between married adults having an affair where moaning and dirty language is heard, you also see his backside and her legs up in the air. Plenty of sex talk in all forms including sexual acts by both adults and teens. A woman's breasts appear on a computer screen. A teen boy gets naked in front of his girlfriend (only his bare butt seen) in a non-sexual way. Teen boy is accused of being gay, talks about sexual acts with another man. An older man almost sleeps with a teenager (her breasts are shown). A grown man kisses another grown man. Language is very strong with every word imaginable. There is also lots of pot talked about, seen and smoked. Drinking. Not for anyone under 18, content is very strong.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written byMovieGuy23 July 7, 2011
AGE
18
QUALITY
 

American Beauty is a dark, effective masterpiece.

American Beauty is in one word: fascinating. The acting is great, the writing is good, and the darkly comical portrait of american lives gone wrong is fresh. Note to parents: That being said, American Beauty contains lots of drug use, swearing, violence, and most notably sexuality. The sexual content contains everything from a man dreaming about a teenage girl to homophobia. Not for kids.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written bylisa.beth.rose June 29, 2011
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

It's so beautiful, I just can't take it!

Truly darkly amazing. It's soo beautiful I almost just can't take it! This film has great acting, especially from the main family and the young man who plays his daughters boyfriend. One of the best films ever made in my opinion- truly great. You really have to watch it to get the feel of it. The father is portrayed as an assh*le who goes after a seventeen year old girl and ignores his family, His daughter is seen as fed up with her family, the mother is a competitive b*tch who cheats on her husband and no one seems to care. All in the middle of this is his daughter her boyfriend and her best friend- a pretty blonde teen who is famous for being a model and seducing older men (Though we figure out she is more innocent at the end) This movie deals with affairs, sex, homosexuality, and just about everything else. Amazing for everyone who can take it. A harsh look at suburban life.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written byamateur_ebert August 21, 2009
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

Some iffy content...parent preview reccomended

To me, American Beauty is reminiscent of Woody Allen; except R-rated and modernized. Just like Battleship Potemkin or Citizen Kane, Beauty is like a textbook for filmmakers; it’s the definition of a successful motion picture. You may be saying, “I’ve seen Annie Hall and Manhattan, they’re nothing like American Beauty.” Consider the subjects of movies such as Hannah and Her Sisters and Interiors; love and lust; rape and sexual violence. Some of the best performances of the decade can be found in Beauty; Kevin Spacey knocks ‘em dead with his performance as Lester Burnham, a troubled suburban man going through mid-life crisis. Spacey’s performance is extremely powerful because sometimes you want to laugh at him and sometimes you want to scream at him. Lester is very believable and maybe even relatable to. Annette Bening also does a marvelous job as Lester’s wife. Sometimes I crack up thinking that this was the same woman who played the prez’s lover in The American President. Spacey and Bening’s, well, hate for each other is a show-stealer. Alan Ball does a superb job with the script, giving it an excellent plot and adding things such as a narrator and a truly thumbs-up opening sequence. Climax, conflict? He does it all. The artistic direction and cinematography are also fantastic, another great combo. If you haven’t seen American Beauty or you have and hated it: watch it (again). It’s a masterpiece.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byrickydoo85 April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Very Powerful Movie

This is one of those movies that make you think. When the movie ends, you just think. Think about what you have just watched. And think about the rest of your life.
Kid, 10 years old May 30, 2010
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

One of my favorites!

On my top 10!Strong oral sex,language including F***,smoking of pot,and sets a bad role model to be a B**** like his wife.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Great role models
Adult Written byFreddyFace December 1, 2009
AGE
17
QUALITY
 

Not a movie for anyone

Horrible movie. So much is soo wrong with it. Grown man lusting after and fantasizing about young girls. Showing the private parts of girls who were underage when filming the movie. I left the movie feeling, dirty, terrible, disturbed, etc. It does make you think, but it's not worth it. Terrible waste of time and money.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 17 years old Written byoctober1985 July 24, 2009
AGE
12
QUALITY
 
Amazing movie, funny and insightful. Kids may not understand the material. There is also sexual content, violence and drug use.
Teen, 14 years old Written byscarlettmoon1994 April 25, 2009
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

Struggles

This is an amazing movie that shows the hidden secrets of families that look perfect on the outside. It shows struggles of adults as well as teenagers. I absolutely love this movie!
Teen, 16 years old Written byjwade123 January 17, 2009
AGE
17
QUALITY
 

Tell me something

Tell me something beautiful and thought provoking, If you are 15 and apparently understood it then why wouldnt a 17 year old understand it.
Teen, 15 years old Written byMovieBuffMan123 April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

spectacular

American beauty is for people who love film as an art, a story as good as it could ever be the academy treated the film with the up most respect and so should you , not made for young children and if weak minded its not for you either
Teen, 14 years old Written byJohan April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

3 STARS? What the heck! THIS IS A FIVE STAR MOVIE!

This movie is one of those rare films that is both art and entertainment. I fell in love with this movie from start to finish and watched it 3 times over again the day after. Amazing, beautiful, well-acted, excellently written and shot, funny, cool, and explicit. Many would say this movie is for adults only, but as you can see, I'm fourteen and had no problem at all with it. There's some sexual dialogue amd two or three bare-breasted incidents. The first is the shortest, less than a second long. A flash of a website on a computer. The second is medium, seen from a distance, maybe ten seconds or a bit more. Not that much. But the last incident, very near the powerful ending, is a couple of minutes. It's pretty long. But again, I could handle it and I think you need to know your kid before you let him/her see this movie. There is a handful of language, but it's not PULP FICTION, and towards the end there is one very violent murder resulting in a LOT of blood pouring from someone's head, but it's not a waterfall. It's a pretty explicit movie but one of the best I've ever seen. Adults, go rent it and bring your MATURE teens with you, kids, ask.
Adult Written byDolphincat March 22, 2015
AGE
2
QUALITY
 
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written bymattbruns3 February 26, 2015
AGE
16
QUALITY
 

16 depending on maturity.

There is strong sexuality that is intense, lots of strong language, and brief nudity. There is one sex scene that is very intense and strong.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Teen, 15 years old Written bylucy11110 December 30, 2014
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

An Amazing Film

American Beauty is one of my favorite films to date. I first saw the film when I was 14, not because my parents had prohibited it but because no one had ever thought to bring it up as a movie I might want to see. I watched it with my mother, father and younger brother present and we all enjoyed the film. In terms of style, script and message, it is powerful and thought-provoking. But the many awards that it has should tell you that. My brother was about 11 when he watched this movie and, honestly, he wasn't interested at all. He likes movies where things get blown up. But, even at 11 he could understand the movie and accept it- it just wasn't what he likes. My brother is, admittedly, quite mature for his age, which is why I wouldn't recommend it for an 11 year old, but instead a 13+ age range. Of course, some children are more mature and responsible than others but on average I believe almost anyone aged 13 and up is mature enough to understand, appreciate and process this movie. Of course, they may have questions and I would advise any parent to sit down and answer them as, at times, the movie can be confronting. At the age of about 13 children start to understand that the world doesn't contain pixies, the tooth fairy or Santa Claus. And, at times, the world can be quite ugly in some aspects. But there are also good things as well and I believe it is films like this that highlight the good, the bad and the ugly. I believe parents and adult often regard children, particularly teenagers, as naive and still not understand how the world works or believe we aren't ready for the hard truths of life. And, I admit, we don't know everything but it's around this time when we start noticing things and may know and understand more than you think. American Beauty is an amazing film and currently my 3rd favourite.
Kid, 10 years old October 2, 2014
AGE
2
QUALITY
 

Abolute bullsh@t

Sex drugs gayness violence. The man is on drugs, images a underage girl and masturbates! His wife has sex with another man and the other man is married! NOT FOR ANY KIDS. It is a druggy, violent porno
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Pages