The movie House of Sand and Fog incorporates many of Marx, Weber, and Durkheim’s ideas and concepts. Status and class were apparent themes throughout the film as demonstrated by the ex Iranian colonel, Behrani. He worked two jobs, one as a road construction worker and the other as a deli clerk. Behrani was unable to let go of his previous elite status and was ashamed that he was now a working class man in America. During his daughters wedding he portrays himself as a very professional and wealthy man with prestige. In reality he is struggling with being in purgatory like state, caught in between the lives of the proletariat and bourgeois.
Kathy also transitions through various status’. She is a Caucasian woman living in the house that her father took 30 years to pay off and within 6 months of her possession it was foreclosed and she was homeless, living a vagabond lifestyle, and a recovering addict. Consequently, she must face the bureaucracy of eviction Marshall’s and lawyers that put her through this whole red tape process that eventually renders no successful results. Kathy decides to take the law into her own hand and trespasses the property which in turn results in a foot injury. Her presence further complicates the Behrani family’s relationship because his family is very traditional and is run in sacred manner. His profane temper destroy the sanctity of the home when his hits his wife in front of their son. This is due in part to him and his family being a victim of anomie since they are living a double life and cannot settle down with an uncertain future lying ahead.
Charisma is a trait held by Officer Lester, who sweet talks his way into Kathy’s life (and her pants.) Officer Lester is driven by his own personal ideals and principles and disregards the law in which he was swore to uphold. He takes advantage of Kathy’s fragile and vulnerable state of mind and breaks protocol by assisting her beyond his professional duties. Lester even informs her of an instance where he planted drugs on a man and sent him to prison since he was an abusive husband. He is an innovator who feels all his actions are justifiable and will do what he believes is necessary to get what he wants even if it’s with lies; like when he threatened to have the Behrani family deported even though they are American citizens.