House of Sand and Fog (2003): An Explanation of Its Final Scene Why does it all have to end so tragically?

House of Sand and Fog (2003): An Explanation of Its Final Scene Why does it all have to end so tragically?

It’s safe to say that House of Sand and Fog is the only significant crime thriller ever written that doesn’t have a single protagonist with ill will toward anyone else. The plot, on the other hand, is constructed in such a way that it guarantees that every single one of the important characters will meet a tragic end. The film is an adaptation of Andre Dubus III’s novel of the same name, which was published in 1999, and it has a finale that is so emotionally gripping that it can be compared to just a select few other films (if any). This section delves into the specifics of what took place.

When Kathy Nicolo (Jennifer Connelly), a teenage girl with severe emotional problems, is forced out of her own home, she is taken aback by the experience. Things go from bad to worse when her home is unlawfully sold at auction to a former colonel in the Imperial Iranian Army named Massoud Amir Behrani (Ben Kingsley). Kathy tries many times, but all of her efforts to convince Behrani to give up the house are unsuccessful.

During this time, she begins an affair with Lester (Ron Eldard), a police officer who has a soft spot in his heart for her. Lester’s decision to take action on Kathy’s behalf in order to regain possession of her home eventually results in a catastrophic chain of events.

 

House of Sand and Fog
House of Sand and Fog

Where Does Behrani Stand On The Issue?

Behrani is a man who lives his life according to his ideals and values. It would appear that he is unable to assist Kathy even if he wished to do so because he is the one who is now living on the edge. Because Behrani was formerly a colonel, he and his family are accustomed to living a life that is rich in pride, veneration, and satisfaction. Due to the fact that he was forced to depart Iran, however, his days of grandeur are now in the past. As a result, he fabricates evidence to support the claim that he is a successful entrepreneur in front of his family. However, he holds down a number of low-paying jobs behind the scenes in order to keep up the appearance of riches and dignity.

He offers a quarter of the asking price and buys Kathy’s house. After that, in order to generate some profit, he intends to rehabilitate the property and then sale it to a third party. Behrani needs the house as well, though not quite as much as Kathy does.

House of Sand and Fog is a psychological drama film that was released in the United States in 2003 and directed by Vadim Perelman. The novel of the same name written by Andre Dubus III served as the inspiration for the screenplay that was written by Perelman and Shawn Lawrence Otto.

Details On House of Sand and Fog

The plot of the movie follows the conflict that arises between a young woman and an Iranian immigrant family over the ownership of a house located in Northern California. This conflict ultimately results in the loss of four lives. Ben Kingsley was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor, and Shohreh Aghdashloo was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. In addition, the film received a nomination for Best Original Score (James Horner).

Plot of House of Sand and Fog

Kathy Nicolo, a recovering drug addict who lives alone in a small house close to the San Francisco Bay Area and avoids eviction notices handed to her for nonpayment of business taxes, was deserted by her spouse and has been living there ever since. She had assumed that the misunderstanding had been resolved, so she was taken aback when Sheriff’s Deputy Lester Burdon showed up to forcibly evict her from the property. Lester has compassion for Kathy and, after informing her that her house will soon be sold at auction, he assists her with moving out of the house and suggests that she seek the services of a lawyer in order to restore ownership of the property.

Massoud Amir Behrani, a former colonel in the Imperial Iranian Army who, along with his family, emigrated to the Bay Area in search of a better life, is now employed in a variety of low-level positions. Because he spends more than he makes, he pretends to be a successful businessman in order to spare the feelings of his family members, particularly his wife Nadereh, son Esmail, and daughter Soraya. He buys Kathy’s house for a fifth of what it would be worth today with the intention of making improvements and then selling it.

Kathy is kicked out of the motel in where she has been staying. Due to the fact that she had nowhere else to go, she decided to spend the night in her car. Upon seeing the renovations and how the Behranis have adjusted to their new home, she becomes resolved to get her house back. She searches for an attorney and finds Connie Walsh, who assures her that because of the county’s mistake, they will return Massoud’s money and restore the house to her ownership. Seeing the renovations and how the Behranis have adjusted to their new home makes her determined to get her house back.

Due to the fact that Massoud has already invested money into the house in order to improve it, he is unwilling to settle for anything less than the increased value of the property, which the county is refusing to pay for. Connie explains to Kathy that suing the county is currently her only choice, despite the fact that the process could take several months. Kathy makes an effort to persuade Massoud to give back the house; he agrees with her that she should fight the county and offers to sell her the house again if she can come up with the money; however, she retaliates by beginning to harass him and his family in front of possible purchasers.

Kathy is in a desperate need of assistance, therefore she quickly becomes involved in an affair with Lester, who leaves his wife and children and begins to portray himself as Kathy’s protector. If Massoud does not agree to sell the house back to the county, Lester threatens to have him and his family removed from the country if he does not sell the residence. Massoud, who was aware that Lester was representing Kathy’s interests, reported this information to Internal Affairs. As a result, they severely reprimanded Lester and angrily warned Kathy to stay away from his family. Kathy reaches out to her brother Frank for assistance, but she is unable to bring herself to accept that she is currently without a house.

She was so depressed that she got drunk, and then she tried to kill herself in the driveway with Lester’s sidearm. When Massoud comes upon her, she is inebriated and unable to fire the gun, so he carries her inside. Nadereh intervenes just in time as Kathy makes another attempt to take her own life with drugs. Lester enters the room as she and her husband are carrying Kathy to the bedroom. He discovers that Kathy is comatose.

Lester erupts into a xenophobic rage and locks Massoud and the Behranis in their own bathroom, refusing to let them out unless Massoud agrees to give up the house. The Behranis are trapped there for several hours. Kathy will receive the money from the sale of the house if she transfers ownership of the property to Massoud in exchange for Massoud’s offer to sell the house. Lester and Massoud go to the county office together so that the deal may be finalized.

Outside the office, Lester starts to roughhouse with Massoud, and Esmail grabs Lester’s revolver and points it at him. Massoud tries to defend himself. Massoud is what initially gets the attention of the law enforcement personnel, but their interpretation of the circumstances leads them to shoot Esmail rather than Lester. Massoud is taken into custody, but he is let go once Lester admits his guilt and is sentenced to jail.

How Does Lester Get Involved?

Lester was a member of the police force that assisted in evicting Kathy from her home. After developing feelings of love for Kathy, Lester leaves his wife and children in order to be with her. Lester is well aware that he is Kathy’s last chance, and as a result, he exerts all effort possible to regain possession of her home. He even goes above and above the call of duty. In one of his visits, he confronts Behrani with the possibility of having him removed from the United States if he does not give up his hold on the house. Even though Lester doesn’t utter any derogatory terms for people of different races, the movie makes it seem as though he might be a xenophobe.

What is Behrani’s Response To This?

Behrani, having served in the military, is well familiar with the procedures. He does not engage in any form of conversation with Lester or Kathy. He explains to Kathy that he is willing to sell the house to her if she is willing to pay the price that he has established for the house.

Behrani reports the incident to Internal Affairs in response to Lester’s threat of deportation, and the response from the department is to admonish Behrani and warn him that his badge would be taken away if he continues to behave in such a manner. The Iranian man is powerful and unwavering in his resolve; you won’t find him crawling on his hands and knees for anything. However, he does have one vulnerability, and that is his family.

Why Does It End In Such A Tragic Manner?

Kathy makes an unsuccessful attempt to end her life by hanging herself with Lester’s sidearm. Behrani finds her outside his house and brings her inside because she is in an incoherent state due to her alcohol consumption. During the time that Behrani and his wife are attempting to take Kathy to the bedroom, Lester storms in. Lester locks the entire Behrani family in the bathroom while threatening them with a gun due to his misunderstanding of the sight.

In an effort to preserve his family, Behrani makes preparations to sell their home and offers Kathy the money from the sale in exchange for her consent to grant him ownership of the property once again. Lester doesn’t waste any time getting Behrani and his son Esmail to the country office; he does it all in one swift motion. Esmail takes Lester’s revolver out of his pocket and points it towards his father because it makes him uneasy to see his father being mistreated. A police officer who suddenly appears at the scene incorrectly assesses the situation and ends up shooting Esmail.

The Horrible Conclusion

The conclusion of The House of Sand and Fog is without a doubt one of the most dramatic and unbelievable we have ever witnessed. Esmail passes away while he is being treated at the hospital, an event that strips Behrani of every single reason to continue living. The next scene takes place in Behrani’s house, where he is shown poisoning his wife’s tea and committing the murder. He reasoned that the death brought on by the poison would be less difficult for his wife than the death brought on by her sorrow.

He then puts on his decorated military uniform and sits down next to her body in the bedroom after having taken her there. In a scenario that is extraordinarily moving, Behrani ties a translucent plastic bag over his face, asphyxiates himself while holding his deceased wife’s hand, and then wraps the bag around his neck.

 

House of Sand and Fog
House of Sand and Fog

Who Is To Blame For This?

Lester is in jail. Kathy is still without a home. And there is not a single Behrani left. How was it possible for so much to take place when not a single character could be labeled as being in a negative state? Having said that, every character exhibited a few undesirable qualities. Behrani lacked empathy, Kathy and Lester both lacked patience, and Behrani was angry. And that was the inspiration for the sand and fog that was used in the house.

In case you hadn’t noticed, there is more to the meaning of the movie’s title than meets the eye. The movie depicts two opposing perspectives of the fight through the use of sand and fog as symbols. The house is merely a symbol of the destruction; it is not in fact the perpetrator of the crime. The presence of even a few negative characteristics is sufficient to bring about severe destruction. To put it succinctly, that is the central focus of the House of Sand and Fog.

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