Actors Dave Johns and Hayley Squires, pose for photographers upon arrival at the premiere of the film ‘I, Daniel Blake’, at a central London, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP)
Upstairs at the Palace cinema its friday evening and 1st showing in the Forest of ‘
‘I Daniel Blake’ the latest film, directed by Ken Loach in the past he has told the stories of lesser known people like the boy in Kes who can’t make life work for him until he trains a hunting bird, a kestrel..or |Cathy in Cathy Come Home a film made to show the state of homelessness in London in 1960s where mothers and their children are given basic accomodation and limited support in the challenge to afford high rents and conditions provided by greedy landlords…
I Daniel Blake is as real and direct aand honest as any of his previous award wimnning films. Set in Newcastle where a London family, a single parent and her two children have been sent as their only chance to get council housing. It follows their experiences in trying to get some help, to eat and keep warm. Through a visit to the Job Centre they meet Daniel Blake a widower who is told by his doctor and a specialist that he3 is unable to work because of a weak heart-however the medical assessor at the Benefits office rules that he is fit to work and so is only entitled to any benefit if he seeks work….
The most tragic and honest moment in the film comes when the young Mum joins a long queue at the food bank and when she gets inside she takes a can of beans and tries to salve her hunger by ripping them open and eating with her hands before she passes out.
The contrast between those ‘only doing their job’ to justify mean hearted behaviour and the other characters, those running the foodbank, others waiting for help in the benefit office shares a reality that makes this film a document-it is no glossy fantasy that much of cinems uses as its mould it is telling the stories of the poor, it gives them a voice, it reveals what is being done to them in our name. But it retains an honest sense of humour and care for others.
Dept of Work & Pensions operates a system of sanctions which removes/ refuses benefits- all of this is run by a private company in persuit of profit rather than a service to support those in need. The evidence proves that sanctions are often successfuly appealed against but the hardship and deprivation rained on the poor meanwhile is a bitter judgement that this film illustrates…
Transfer your attention to the ‘other media’ where the cuts are reported but not their impact , where taxes for the richest are reduced