American Beauty: Analysis of Lester Burnham

1631 words 7 pages
Introduction to the Analysis of Lester Burnham When I was told to choose a movie to perform a psychoanalysis on a character. I did not know what movie to choose. After watching the two hour long film on the multiple characters that seemed to be struggling to find their inner happiness: American Beauty. I knew that I should not look any further. One character that especially stood out was, Lester Burnham. A forty-two year old father with a mid-life crisis. In the film, American Beauty Lester Burnham is portrayed as an ordinary man, with a perfect life, but of course that is far from the truth. From the outside, Lester seems to have a perfect salary, and a perfect family who lives in a perfect neighborhood. In reality, things are not …show more content…

These are all the things that the character of Lester Burnham embodies on a day to day basis: “People with this disorder resent responsibility and show it through their behaviors, rather than by openly expressing their feelings. They often use procrastination, inefficiency, and forgetfulness to avoid doing what they need to do or have been told by others to do…A person with this disorder may appear to comply with another's wishes and may even demonstrate enthusiasm for those wishes. However, they perform the requested action too late to be helpful, perform it in a way that is useless, sabotage the action to show anger that they cannot express in words”(Vorvick, & Rogge, 2008) His evident mid life crisis causes him to irresponsibly buy a red sports car and fall in lust with someone that is the age of his daughter, also known as Angela in the film. His first encounter with Angela started the red rose petal frenzy. Everytime he interacted with her red rose petals appeared in her significance. The rose petals signified a sense of happiness for Lester and acceptance by the only female in the film. Another symptom for passive aggressive behavior is feeling resentment and hostility. Mr. Burnham clearly displayed his feeling of resentment and hostility in the second dinner scene where him and his wife get into an altercation over how Lester up and quit his job, when he had a clear chance to save it. But things started going