In its 25 years The National Lottery has won 15 Oscars and 100 Baftas, by funding more than 500 films.
Since 1994 the lottery has awarded more than 565,000 grants to good causes across arts, sports and film.
Thanks to National Lottery funding, the BFI invests over £50million a year into funding British films.
To mark National Lottery Cinema Day next Sunday, August 25, for every line you buy in the Lotto Double Prize Event Draw for the Saturday you get a free adult cinema ticket to use the next day at participating venues.
And to mark the day, our writers have picked the lottery-funded UK film they love most.
To find out how you can claim your free tickets and which cinemas are taking part in your area, click here
Billy Elliot (2000)
Billy twirling and tap dancing his way down a north eastern alleyway to the stomping sound of A Town Called Malice has to be one of the most iconic scenes in British movie history.
The 2000 film about an 11-year-old boy wanting to become a professional ballet dancer had everything.
A gritty and unique storyline set in our recent history, an ahead-of-its-time look at gender stereotyping, a T.Rex-heavy soundtrack that sent you running straight to HMV and a great cast. Julie Walters, say no more.
Set in County Durham during the 1984-85 coal miners’ strike, Jamie Bell played Billy, battling the negative perceptions of being a boy who dances. That scene at the end when Billy leapt into the air in Swan Lake, as his family gasped in the audience, well it gets me every time. This 20 year old film is still totally on pointe.
Made In Dagenham (2010)
The punters’ money was well spent helping to finance Made In Dagenham, a film that celebrates equality in the workplace.
It is the inspiring story of women sewing machinists at the Ford motor company plant who went on strike for equal pay with men in 1968.
The walk-out was successful, and led directly to the 1970 Equal Pay Act, introduced by Barbara Castle, Labour Employment Secretary played in the 2010 movie by Miranda Richardson.
Directed by Nigel Cole and also starring Bob Hoskins, Sally Hawkins and Rosamund Pike, it was described by one critic as “robust, amiable and so warmhearted you’d be a churl to take against it.”
Made In Dagenham honours the courage of working class women who fought not just hostile management but unsympathetic, male-dominated union attitudes in the Sixties.
Notes on a Scandal (2006)
Film adaptations of bestselling books are dangerous ground. Either they will be accepted and adored, because it’s all exactly as we imagined when we were reading it, or rejected and abhorred, because it’s all nothing like we imagined when we were reading it, and how dare you?
A great way around this is to get the kind of actor you can’t really go wrong with, come what may.
For the adaptation of Zoe Heller’s Notes On A Scandal they went one better, and got two.
Most of us would watch Dame Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett do just about anything, so this film had won before it was even released.
But the story of older teacher Barbara who became strangely obsessed with a younger one, Sheba, who then embarked on an affair with a schoolboy, was utterly compelling.
The King's Speech (2010)
This funny, touching and crowd pleasing historical drama shows British filmmaking at its regal best.
It’s based on a what was a little known, remarkable and long lasting friendship between the stammering future King George VI and his Australian speech and language therapist, Lionel Logue.
A huge box office smash on a tiny budget, it was showered with awards and went to on to win four of the five biggest Oscars, Best Picture, Director, Original Screenplay and Actor, from 12 nominations.
The latter award deservedly went to homegrown star, Colin Firth, for his warm, sympathetic and intelligent performance as George VI, referred to as Bertie throughout the film.
Firth and Aussie actor Geoffrey Rush make for a wonderful mismatched pair as patient and therapist who become friends, after Bertie’s brother abdicates.
With costumes wonderfully evocative of the era, some sublime swearing and an uplifting finale, this is a royal treat.
Where Hands Touch (2018)
When you have two young boys, a rare trip to the cinema usually involves something with lots of fighting and smashing.
So it was lovely when I was invited to see the very grown up Where Hands Touch, by Bafta award-winning director Amma Asante.
Set in Nazi Germany, it tells the story of a mixed raced teenage girl who falls in love with the son of a high ranking SS officer.
It’s brutal as you would expect from a film of that era – some of the film is set in a concentration camp – but there are also some very tender moments of compassion, friendship and love.
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