It took him 30 years to pay it off,” a plaintive Kathy Nicolo (Connelly) says about her father. ”And it took me eight months to f — – it up.” After the county seizes her bungalow due to a tax snafu, the suicidal alcoholic struggles to reclaim her waterfront property from its new owner, Iranian colonel-turned-American capitalist Massoud Amir Behrani (Kingsley). House’s foundation seems solid as the fierce plot unfolds, with crisp dialogue, breathtaking cinematography, and most notably, Aghdashloo’s wrenching performance as Behrani’s willful wife. But not even a pair of Oscar-nominated turns — from Kingsley and Aghdashloo — can prevent the film’s devolution from radiance to melodrama. EXTRAS Deleted scenes and a behind-the-scenes doc (Zzzz…) are skippable. Aghdashloo’s amazingly raw audition, meanwhile, is Oscar-worthy in itself.

House of Sand and Fog

  • Movie
  • R
  • 126 minutes
  • Vadim Perelman