Iconoclast Ken Loach returns from retirement at the age of 79 to win the second Palme d’Or of his career at the Cannes Film Festival with this often funny and intensely moving social realist drama about a disabled Newcastle carpenter and his struggles with bureaucratic red tape.
This is the story of 59-year-old Daniel Blake who finds himself inadvertently fighting for the disenfranchised after nearly falling from a scaffold and suffering a heart attack. Daniel needs help from the state for the first time in his life and, while confronting a more-often-than-not inefficient and isolating benefits system, he meets a single mother, Kattie. Kattie and her two young children are also caught on the barbed wire of welfare bureaucracy.
An all-too alarming reproach of modern-day Britain, I, Daniel Blake highlights social ills that are unjustifiable at the best (and worst) of times, delivering a timely and worthy message as many undergo their own Daniel Blake travails at various points of the globe.