A whimsical fantasy, revolving around the world of Bingo, House
(2000) was slipped innocuously into the UKs staple cinematic diet of gangster movies and period dramas and emerged as a genuinely charismatic and immensely likeable film, blissfully content with its small-scale ambitions, not to mention lottery money well spent. Linda (Trainspotting
s Kelly MacDonald) is devoted to her job at the faltering La Scala Bingo Hall in rural Wales, which provides a welcome escape from her domineering aunt. Facing stiff competition from a rival hall, La Scalas owner Mr. Alanzi (the wonderful Freddie Jones) is at a loss of how to save his beloved home, but Lindas discovery of an unexpected gift could reverse their fortunes. Effortlessly charming and perfectly cast, House
weaves its spirited feel-good tale with an eclectic set of characters (Jason Hughes flamboyant star number caller, Mossie Smiths monstrous flirting colleague), while delivering a realistic glimpse of what makes a place special and memorable. Highly enjoyable, this is a small-scale gem.
On the DVD: Director Julian Kemp delivers a competent, if sometimes rambling commentary that delivers the goods about a straightforward production. Other than six trailers, theres the chance to glimpse Kemps short-film Suckers, a suitably wry and cynical look at the world of door-to-door salesmen. --Danny Graydon
When bingo caller Linda (Kelly MacDonald) discovers that she has the power to predict the winning numbers, she hopes to use it to win the jackpot and prevent La Scala, the small bingo hall where she works, from being overtaken by the success of the huge Mega Pleasure complex which has opened nearby. If her plan is to work she needs to find a partner who will play while she calls, but who can she trust?