Widowed, middle-aged woodworker Daniel Blake (Johns) has suffered a recent heart attack. A government health care worker deems him fit enough to return to work, even though his doctor has not given him the green light. To be eligible for benefits, he must prove he is actively seeking employment. While navigating the labyrinthine job market, he meets a young mother (Squires) who has been equally mistreated by the broken welfare system. Together they find a measure of solace in their shared misfortune.
British filmmaker Loach continues his distinguishes career in socially conscious, working class cinema with this searing indictment of bureaucratic indifference. Telling his story with neorealist simplicity and heartbreaking tenderness, Loach conveys the deep despair and anguish his characters feel, coaxing superb performances from his actors . Winner of the Palme d’Or and many other awards, this film couldn’t be more topical in our modern, mechanized age. It’s a crowning achievement for this masterful director.