After years of squabbling with her ex-husband (Descamps) about their country estate, middle-aged Pascale (Huppert) has decided to sell the house and open a bed and breakfast. But her live-at-home adult twin sons, headstrong college student Thierry (Jeremie Renier) and quiet Francois (Yannick Renier), are vehemently opposed to the idea, and try to squelch Pascale's dreams at every turn.
This tense, tightly controlled drama about fission at the heart of a nuclear family deals in caustic resentment and colorful verbal abuse, feeling at times close to a thriller. Huppert is a gifted actress who's comfortable exploring the uncomfortable regions where passion and perversion meet, and the Reniers are equally good at the quasi-incestuous role of the needling brothers who eventually turn against each other. Families are messy, and “Private Property,” which borders on the explosive, brings an even dirtier sense of play to domestic dysfunction.