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Thread: American Beauty

  1. #21
    Senior Member Max's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Ricky's parents: ISTJ and ISFJ. They're almost cliches of the type, honestly. (And the mom has psychological issues.)
    And the dad doesn't? Hm.

  2. #22
    man-made neptunesnet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    The story was really about Lester's growth. I was hard on Lester above, yet I think I should add that usually when one moves from passivity and being a child, one goes through a rebellious and self-absorbed stage. This is Lester throughout most of the movie, and I think it was actually necessary for him to pass through that wasteland to get to a good place.

    His catharsis when he "wakes up" and takes care of Angela is his moment of glory. It's unfortunate that he never gets to move past it because of his neighbor's phobia and rigidity. If he had survived, I actually think things between him and Carolyn would have changed. He would have finally reached out to her; and after some internal struggle on her part, she would have reached back. Her wailing in the bedroom, clutching his clothes and smelling the smell of him, after she knows he is gone, really shows how much she really did love him; the end of their relationship is devastating to her, regardless of how just a few minutes before she was contemplating violence herself.
    Yeah I probably should have added how much the end upset me. Lester had finally reached a point where he was, as you said, truly liberated and then he's killed. I may have really disliked Lester & how self-centered he was, but I was also rooting for his redemption. I wanted that to happen for him.


    Sidenote: Chris Cooper (plays Ricky's father) is such a great actor. Very underrated.

  3. #23
    Senior Member Tiltyred's Avatar
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    Yeah, that's a movie that I've watched over and over and still walk off wondering what the hell that was all about.

  4. #24
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neptunesnet View Post
    Sidenote: Chris Cooper (plays Ricky's father) is such a great actor. Very underrated.
    Well, at least in the public mind.

    The critics love and respect him, he typically gets high marks in whatever movie he is in... and he has quite a variety of characters he has successfully portrayed. He's one of the best character actors around.
    Chris Cooper (I)

    I liked how he played Ricky's dad in a way that, although he in some ways is a walking military homophobe cliche, he still resonated as a very real, very human, very unique person who -- although I despised him for what he did and what he stood for -- was someone I also immensely pitied. The expression of his face when he shuffled back into the rain from Lester's garage captured everything.

    Another actor might have really mishandled this character.

    Quote Originally Posted by Max View Post
    And the dad doesn't? Hm.
    I think the dad's issues were so obvious we don't even have to beat it around.
    But he was also still functional in society.

    The mom was nice... so I felt like it was worth pointing out.
    And her issues actually made her practically non-functional.
    When no one was there, she literally turned off like an android and just sat in hibernate mode. That was rather scary, to see her dissociate from reality if there was no one around to activate her. She had no life of her own.

    (BTW, that same actress played the nameless Mother figure in the Island backstory of Lost this final season.)
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Senior Member Tiltyred's Avatar
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    The mom was the classic example of an abused woman, where her volition disappears because she's punished no matter what she does, so she waits for an explicit order to carry out. (I'd imagine she didn't have to wait long.)

  6. #26
    Senior Member IndyGhost's Avatar
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    on carolyn and lester: i feel like i understand both sides, as i'm an ISFP and my sister is an ESFJ. mbti/socionics says it's a good match... in my experience, it's always been one of the worst. i've even dated a few ESFJ's. but anyways, i think young and older carolyn fits ESFJ type. they can be incredibly fun people to be around, and it's because of their desire to entertain others, similar to ESFP's. this part gets along with the ISFP, not to mention emotionally they are able to help each other. however, ESFJ's tend to be quite the materialists... whereas ISFP's, though can be materialistic as well... lean more towards a desire for detachment of it. i completely got lester in the couch scene. also, his desire to see carolyn as she used to be goes along with the ISFP's want for a playmate in a spouse. it's all just a big SP clash with SJ.

    with jane, i agree with aleksei on ISFP as well. however, for ricky INTP might very well be right. the scene where they are watching the plastic bag video: ISFP's have Ni tertiary and Te inferior. while jane watched the video and listened to ricky talk about it, i think her Ni sensed something profound, but her Te enabled her from expressing it verbally. so... she did what any ISFP would do... express through action. she kissed him. i felt like the same scene showed ricky as leaning more towards INFP than INTP. i think the scenes with his parents was just his reaction to dealing with a hard ass ISTJ dad and his estranged mother.
    "I don't know a perfect person.
    I only know flawed people who are still worth loving."
    -John Green

  7. #27
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    Lightbulb I'll chime, love this movie

    Carolyn(easy)-dramatic, materialistic, conformist, hard driving but not birght at all-an obvious, unhealthy but somewhat typical middle-aged ESFJ.

    Lester-I have trouble with him-xxFP, beaten down over two decades by dogshit job and spouse, not the first guy or gal in the history of the world to snap after a certain amount of those things.

    Jane-IxFP, actually I'll go with ISFP, I know this is subjective but she bears an uncanny resemblance in appearance, mannerisms, bedroom decor, and even the same first name as my ISFP sister.

    Ricky-INxP, I am tentatively sold on Jennifer's analysis as INTP, next time I see it I'll think about it again.

    Buddy-Driven but not overbearing, smooth, not shy but not loud either.
    maybe ENTJ with second choice xSTP-they can all be good at sales.

  8. #28
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    I actually feel pretty strongly about Jane not being an S.

    It hasn't helped that every ISFP woman I've known has hated to be abrasive. Not all of them are gooey (although I've noticed a preponderance who have and show deep affection for their pets and don't seem to want to hurt a flea), but there's such an easy-goingness about ISFPs that I haven't experienced that type of rebellion (Jane is a noted non-conformist) from them, especially the females.

    Usually an ISFP doesn't respond to negativity the way Jane does here. She basically responds in more typical INFP style rebellion. Very low-key except when someone gets in her face, then she will shove back; otherwise she just keeps herself protected behind her somewhat-detached exterior.

    Put another way, the ISFP is more prone to palpably reveal their Fi-style values in overt (although often low-key) shows of affection. INFPs will abstract it more; it's there, but not as manifest. Jane detaches and lives in her mind... and this is far more typical of N. This is why they often express negative energy in terms of being slightly out of sync (if not more) with the surrounding culture... leading to Goth appearance/behavior and whatever else. It's their way to maintain their individuality and preserve their inner values. ISFPs seem to dabble in lots of things a la brocalage, but move on because it's more an experiment for them rather than an actual part of how they've placed their feet in the ground to differentiate themselves from society.

    I think Ricky would also be bored with Jane if she was an S (and that is not meant in the least as a jab at S types, it's just a telling comment about Ricky's personality). Jane's internalization of her values and thoughts (rather than expressing them through tangible acts like S's more commonly do) is intriguing to him. Angela is the "obvious beauty" of the two and very S in how she projects herself, she's the conventional bombshell, and yet Ricky barely even notices her. He can see that Jane has walls, and he wants to know what is behind them. They connect because they are so similar.

    Frankly I think an ISFP woman would be sorta freaked out by Ricky's penchant for taking pictures of dead things and his general obsession with death. They would think "he's not right." Some of what he says would creep them out as unkind, insensitive, detached, demented, etc. Jane knows she should be creeped out... but she's not... or rather, she senses something deeper inside of Ricky as well and it intrigues her.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  9. #29
    Senior Member IndyGhost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    I actually feel pretty strongly about Jane not being an S.

    It hasn't helped that every ISFP woman I've known has hated to be abrasive. Not all of them are gooey (although I've noticed a preponderance who have and show deep affection for their pets and don't seem to want to hurt a flea), but there's such an easy-goingness about ISFPs that I haven't experienced that type of rebellion (Jane is a noted non-conformist) from them, especially the females.

    Usually an ISFP doesn't respond to negativity the way Jane does here. She basically responds in more typical INFP style rebellion. Very low-key except when someone gets in her face, then she will shove back; otherwise she just keeps herself protected behind her somewhat-detached exterior.

    Put another way, the ISFP is more prone to palpably reveal their Fi-style values in overt (although often low-key) shows of affection. INFPs will abstract it more; it's there, but not as manifest. Jane detaches and lives in her mind... and this is far more typical of N. This is why they often express negative energy in terms of being slightly out of sync (if not more) with the surrounding culture... leading to Goth appearance/behavior and whatever else. It's their way to maintain their individuality and preserve their inner values. ISFPs seem to dabble in lots of things a la brocalage, but move on because it's more an experiment for them rather than an actual part of how they've placed their feet in the ground to differentiate themselves from society.

    I think Ricky would also be bored with Jane if she was an S (and that is not meant in the least as a jab at S types, it's just a telling comment about Ricky's personality). Jane's internalization of her values and thoughts (rather than expressing them through tangible acts like S's more commonly do) is intriguing to him. Angela is the "obvious beauty" of the two and very S in how she projects herself, she's the conventional bombshell, and yet Ricky barely even notices her. He can see that Jane has walls, and he wants to know what is behind them. They connect because they are so similar.

    Frankly I think an ISFP woman would be sorta freaked out by Ricky's penchant for taking pictures of dead things and his general obsession with death. They would think "he's not right." Some of what he says would creep them out as unkind, insensitive, detached, demented, etc. Jane knows she should be creeped out... but she's not... or rather, she senses something deeper inside of Ricky as well and it intrigues her.
    not every ISFP grows up to be peachy-keen and bubbly. i had a "goth" phase of my own. think ISFP with an enneagram 4. and with her reaction to her parents, it was a bit reminiscent of responses i've had at the site of a train wreck where you know there's nothing you can do. she's created a "cool" exterior.

    also, we're rarely freaked out by others. we might go with the grain and say we are if that's what the consensus believes... but internally aren't actually. (remember how jane said ricky was a weirdo in front of angela, but you could see she didn't mean it. she was actually intrigued.) ISFP's embrace ours as well as others individuality and often see beauty where others don't, much like the INFP counterpart.

    ISFP's also rarely express their values, thoughts or opinions. it's not an S thing to express them.
    "I don't know a perfect person.
    I only know flawed people who are still worth loving."
    -John Green

  10. #30
    Spoiled Brat 🍒 Masokissed's Avatar
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    I think it's funny that a few people were arguing Angela is an introvert just because she had another side to her, or whatever. She's SUCH an ESFP. I relate to her a lot, actually. Anyways, every other typing seems right so far. Ex. Carolyn ESFJ, Jane ISFP, Lester ISFP. The only thing is, I think Ricky could be more INTJ than INTP or INFP (Ni oddness and primary perception and Fi individuality/emo-ness).
    I want my cake and I wanna eat it too

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