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I, Daniel Blake (2016)

R | | Drama | 21 October 2016 (UK)
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2:23 | Trailer
A middle aged carpenter who requires state welfare after suffering a heart attack is joined by a single mother in a similar scenario.

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374 ( 115)
Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 17 wins & 27 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
Katie
...
...
Daisy
Dylan McKiernan ...
Dylan
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
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Employment Support Allowance Assessor
Junior Atilassi ...
Student
Laura Jane Barnes-Martin
Jane Birch ...
Librarian
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Job Centre Floor Manager
...
Postman
Helen Dixon ...
Police officer
Sammy T. Dobson ...
Specialist Nurse
Kathleen Germain ...
Food Bank
...
Appeal Receptionist
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Storyline

A 59 year old carpenter recovering from a heart attack befriends a single mother and her two kids as they navigate their way through the impersonal, Kafkaesque benefits system. With equal amounts of humor, warmth and despair, the journey is heartfelt and emotional until the end.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

21 October 2016 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Eu, Daniel Blake  »

Filming Locations:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was shot in chronological order. Lead actress Hayley Squires was not given the entire script to read before filming. She only was given fragments as accompanying scenes were shot. See more »

Goofs

When Daniel is in the benefits office the adviser Ann notices he looks unwell and sits him down and gives Daniel a plastic cup of water. Initially when Daniel gets the cup there are two or three cups stick together, as sometimes happens, the film then cuts away and then back and Daniels cup has become just one plastic cup. See more »

Quotes

Daniel: We should all be drinking a lot more bloody coffee.
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Connections

Featured in Versus: The Life and Films of Ken Loach (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Sailing By
Composed by Ronald Binge
Performed by 'The Alan Perry/William Gardner Orchestra'
(1963)
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User Reviews

 
The best film I have seen this year.
3 November 2016 | by (Derry, Ireland) – See all my reviews

After seeing "I, Daniel Blake" there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Ken Loach isn't just the best director to have come out of Britain in the last 50 years but one of only a small handful of great directors still working today. Of course, his films are not merely 'entertainments'; he is the most unashamedly political director there is and "I, Daniel Blake" is his most unashamedly political film, certainly since "Cathy Come Home". It is also possibly his best.

Once again the writer is Paul Laverty who was worked with Loach numerous times in the past, (theirs is the among the greatest of all cinematic partnerships), and his superb script cuts to the bone. As someone who has sat on both sides of a Benefits Office counter I can honestly say that no-one strikes a false note here. Loach is famous for working with non-professionals or largely unknown actors, (Carol White, a fresh face when she made "Cathy Come Home", David Bradley in "Kes", Crissy Rock in "Ladybird Ladybird"), and "I, Daniel Blake" is no different.

The title character is played by stand-up comic Dave Johns and the young, single mother he befriends is Haley Squires. Add in an extraordinary cast of British character players and you have a film that oozes a documentary-like realism from every pore. Of course, at times it is virtually unwatchable. This is a film about victims and the appalling bureaucracy that sees them slip through the net. You could say it is a film about the failure of the Welfare State. Unlike "Cathy Come Home" however, I can't see it touching the hearts and minds of our present Tory Government which surely is shameful. Brexit, we have been told, is about taking back control but control of what; an appallingly defunct system where to care or show feeling is almost a sackable offence? The film was rightly applauded at the screening I attended and is the best I have seen this year.


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