The Lottery Reviews
I first saw this film when it premiered on TV 10-12 years ago and forgot the name. Years later I came across it again and finally got the DVD version.
Based on the short story by horror writer Shirley Jackson (who also wrote "The Haunting Of Hill House"), "The Lottery" is the film adaption of a story that was controversial in the USA of 1948 when it was first published.
It follows the tale of a man who returns to the village of his distant childhood to locate his mother's grave thus enabling him to scatter his father's ashes by her side. The villagers however are particularly unhelpful, at first claiming no knowledge of her, then giving conflicting accounts of how his mother died, until they become openly hostile towards him.
There are two twists to the tale, one being the truth regarding his mother's death, followed by a more subtle and disturbing one right at the very end. Although a modern, well-produced little film, "The Lottery" has the feel of an earlier era of "The Wicker Man" or "Doomwatch" in its tale of a strange isolated community with a nasty secret to hide.
With an almost perfect pace, good solid performances from the whole cast, and the eerie paradox of perfectly happy, yet strangely disturbing village life, this is one of my favourite films.