×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Bingo: The Documentary

Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN.

Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN.

Intriguing, if not quite satisfying, docu delves into underground world of bingo, which rakes in billions per year and has more adherents than sports, arts and showbiz combined. Many-hatted Seattle helmer John Jeffcoat sought out gaming spots in North America and the U.K. to make this composite portrait of smoke-shrouded bingoholics, but subject ultimately boils down to the oft-repeated philosophy, “Without this, I wouldn’t know what to do with myself.” This narrative simplicity, plus vid origins, make “Bingo: The Documentary” likely to settle into long stay at corner table in cable halls.

Patented by Yahtzee-meister Edwin S. Lowe (after refining a farm-country version called Beano), the infectious game found its way into churches and community centers, with contempo spinoffs including gay bingo, singles-night bingo and Caribbean-cruise bingo. Common thread is addictive personalities without much self-reflection, and cross-section is as unlovely and non-youthful as you’d expect. Pic is aided by snappy music and a tongue-in-cheek tone. But despite the presence of psych types who put both positive and troubling spins on the passive pastime, it doesn’t quite get to what makes the faithful tick — perhaps because there’s nothing to get.

Bingo: The Documentary

(DOCU -- 16mm)

Production: A Jeffcoat Films production. Produced by Deryn Williams. Directed, written, edited by John Jeffcoat.

Crew: Camera (16mm, digital video), Jeffcoat; music, Don Fox, City Slickers; sound, Deryn Williams; titles, Ross Jeffcoat.

More Film

  • Idris Isan Elba

    Idris Elba's Daughter Isan Named 2019 Golden Globe Ambassador

    Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN. Intriguing, if not quite satisfying, docu delves into underground world of bingo, which rakes in billions per year and has more adherents than sports, arts and showbiz combined. Many-hatted Seattle helmer John Jeffcoat sought out gaming spots in North America and the U.K. […]

  • Cassandra Cain

    Harley Quinn Spinoff 'Birds of Prey' Casts Cassandra Cain (EXCLUSIVE)

    Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN. Intriguing, if not quite satisfying, docu delves into underground world of bingo, which rakes in billions per year and has more adherents than sports, arts and showbiz combined. Many-hatted Seattle helmer John Jeffcoat sought out gaming spots in North America and the U.K. […]

  • Lily James Armie Hammer

    Lily James, Armie Hammer to Star in Daphne du Maurier Adaptation 'Rebecca'

    Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN. Intriguing, if not quite satisfying, docu delves into underground world of bingo, which rakes in billions per year and has more adherents than sports, arts and showbiz combined. Many-hatted Seattle helmer John Jeffcoat sought out gaming spots in North America and the U.K. […]

  • JJ AbramsJJ Abrams at the Oxford

    J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot Adds Six Projects to Growing Film Slate

    Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN. Intriguing, if not quite satisfying, docu delves into underground world of bingo, which rakes in billions per year and has more adherents than sports, arts and showbiz combined. Many-hatted Seattle helmer John Jeffcoat sought out gaming spots in North America and the U.K. […]

  • Effie Brown

    AGC Studios to Produce Effie Brown's Action-Comedy Film 'We Real Cool'

    Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN. Intriguing, if not quite satisfying, docu delves into underground world of bingo, which rakes in billions per year and has more adherents than sports, arts and showbiz combined. Many-hatted Seattle helmer John Jeffcoat sought out gaming spots in North America and the U.K. […]

  • Google Spotlight Stories' 'Age of Sail'

    Google Spotlight Stories Releases Animated Short 'Age of Sail' on Multiple Platforms

    Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival, June 6, 1999. Running time: 63 MIN. Intriguing, if not quite satisfying, docu delves into underground world of bingo, which rakes in billions per year and has more adherents than sports, arts and showbiz combined. Many-hatted Seattle helmer John Jeffcoat sought out gaming spots in North America and the U.K. […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content