Life as a House (2001) - Rotten Tomatoes

Life as a House2001

Life as a House (2001)



Critic Consensus: A manipulative tearjerker, Life as a House benefits from fine performances from the cast.

Life as a House Photos

Movie Info

George Monroe has had a lifelong ambition to achieve one of the great American Dreams: to build his own home, a refuge set on a cliff at the end of the sea. But it's a dream that George has put off again and again while he's sunk lower and lower--ending up divorced, overworked and estranged not only from friends and family, but from himself. Now George has hit rock bottom and there's nowhere to go... except out onto the edge. His neighbors despise his sagging, dilapidated shack. His teen-aged son would rather stare into space than raise a finger to help him. His ex-wife, who once shared his dream, is now emotionally distant from him. Local city officials want to sabotage his plans. It seems there is no one left with any faith in him. But George is determined to build this house--even if it means refurbishing his entire life. He begins the project alone, but soon attracts a disparate group of people. What begins as a way for George to redeem his own dreams turns into something much bigger....

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Scott Bakula
as Kurt Walker
Sam Robards
as David Dokos
John Pankow
as Bryan Burke
Kim Delgado
as Bob Larson
Sandra Nelson
as Nurse No. 1
Art Chudabula
as Steven Gardner
Claire Yarlitt
as Receptionist
Tannis Benedict
as Secretary
Jeff LeBeau
as Officer
Gwen McGee
as Nurse No. 2
Lisa Lovett-Mann
as Young Woman
Hillary Tuck
as Alyssa's Friend
Steven Artenian
as Contractor
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News & Interviews for Life as a House

Critic Reviews for Life as a House

All Critics (105) | Top Critics (32)

Gauged strictly by the gag-factor, a more honest title might be Life as a Basement Apartment with Bad Light and a Dank Smell.

March 19, 2002 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

As a drama it's insipid, maudlin junk that'll have you reaching for the sick-bucket rather than the Kleenex.

March 18, 2002 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…

The movie gets us to feel about the characters, their relationships, and their circumstances, and that goes a long way towards allowing us to forgive the screenplays' occasional mis-steps and wrong turns.

November 27, 2001 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Life as a House reaches easily past all your intellectual and emotional barriers, back into that spot behind your heart, where the levers that release tears are stored.

November 2, 2001 | Full Review…

There's a prefab construction to Life as a House that prevents it from acquiring the emotional solidness it needs to stand out.

November 2, 2001 | Full Review…

House may suffer from excessive and unnecessary ornamentation, but its foundation -- Kline's performance -- is solid and strong.

November 2, 2001 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Life as a House

Everytime aging Kevin Kline glooms over the welcoming sea and remembers when his wife loved him and holding his toddler son in the sand, laughing and crying, and then that music hits for five solid minutes, i just know, like telepathically that my grandmother is watching this same movie on t.v. and crying her eyes backward into her head, except she also hears the hateful, offensive rock soundtrack and so she silently judges it while she weeps.

Coxxie Mild Sauce
Coxxie Mild Sauce

Super Reviewer


I am a big fan of Kevin Kline, and I think that this is one of his best movies. Very moving, and very well done. Great for anyone who likes a good drama.

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer


George is having a bad year. Divorced, alone, estranged from his loser son, behind the times, he has no motivation. Then in the same day he gets fired and finds out he has terminal cancer. What a start to a movie! I enjoy this sort of movie - as George is dying, he resolves his issues with his ex-wife and son, Sam. Sam is having a tough time of it as well - needing drugs just to get by and withdrawing from the world. With the help of Alyssa, Sam helps his dad build a house and becomes less self-centred.

Red Lats
Red Lats

Super Reviewer

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