Jordi Torrent’s likeable if hokey tale about the residents of a Barcelona boarding house suffers from a five-year delay in its release. Though shot well before “Dirty Pretty Things” and “Auberge Espanole,” pic’s then-fresh touches — a sinister organ-trafficking plot and a Spanish lodging serving as a cross-cultural oasis — now appear weakly derivative. Still, the nicely assorted international cast generates gentle goodwill as geriatric Europeans join forces with Third World youth to wrest a chunk of real estate and a modicum of justice from the soulless, globalist rich. “Compass” could find a berth in Hispanic fests and cable.
The multi-ethnic, multilingual boarding house clan, which includes a French-Canadian writer cum night manager, a Moroccan worker, a West African peddler, and two retired pensioners, one Spanish and one German, is threatened with eviction when the dying owner’s cold-hearted son puts the building on the block. When the tenants’ scheme to buy the place themselves is thwarted, the arrival of a beautiful Indian woman and her son on a mysterious mission gives purpose to the motley collection of seeming losers. Tech credits are pro.