ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

I, Daniel Blake Film Review

Updated on August 11, 2017
Coffeequeeen profile image

Louise is a film enthusiast and enjoys films particularly from the 40's and 50's era & enjoys writing about films she has seen.

The character Daniel Blake in the film.

How the system can lead to utter frustration.

When I first heard about the film I, Daniel Blake, it interested me. Having been in his situation in the past, I thought perhaps there were parts of the film I could relate to, so I went to watch this at the cinema one evening, and glad I did.

Film Information

  • Released: 2016
  • Running time: 100 minutes
  • Genre: Drama
  • Director: Ken Loach
  • Producer: Rebecca O'Brien
  • Distributed by: eOne Films

Main Cast:

  • Dave Jones - Daniel Blake
  • Hayley Squires - Katie
  • Sharon Percy - Shiela

The Film

59 year old Daniel Blake is a carpenter by trade. Due to having a heart attack, he loses his job. When his Cardiologist tells him he is unable to go back to work, he resigns to attending the Job Centre to apply for Benefits to help him whilst he is out of work. This film, although fictional, highlights the plight of the unemployed in Great Britain. With everything seemingly turning to online and the Internet, we see how this can be an obstacle for many people if they don't have a PC or have little experience in using one. From the most basic of tasks like applying for benefits and creating a Resumè, this can be the most difficult of things to do when you have little or no experience with Computers.

What we see is the process Daniel goes through with the Job Centre staff instructing him to do things what is in the agreement he signs when he first makes a claim. Certain things like applying for jobs on a daily basis, recording his job searching on the online portal, attending meetings and group sessions which the Job Centre send him to. All this can be very frustrating. And when you don't do what they tell you to, you get sanctioned. A sanction is when they have the ability to put a halt on any benefits you are in receipt of for up to 3 years. Now, Daniel does all he can to look for work. But with a hand written Resumè and little knowledge of how to use a computer, things start to get on top of him.

What we see is a struggle to make the 'system' and the powers that be to listen to him, and be heard. With all this going on, he befriends Katie, a single mother of two. We see the sheer desperation of how this young woman is trying to survive and bring up her two children, and resorting to using food banks so she can simply put food on the table. As Daniel and Katie form a close friendship, we see on the other side of the spectrum the good people that help when one is rock bottom.


My Thoughts

This was an interesting and thought-provoking film. I have been unemployed and been in his situation, so I can relate to what is being said in the film. And, although I know a lot will disagree with what's being portrayed, I do believe what is being said. Having gone through the Job Centre process, I know how frustrating it can be. Thankfully I am computer literate and able to get online when I want. So life was a bit easier for me as 90% of my job searching was done on the Internet. It can be soul destroying and cringe worthy going through this, and you do have to do what they tell you. I know this is an emotive subject, and it's sparked debate on both sides of the fence. Thankfully I am in employment now, but I can sympathize with the character of Daniel Blake. I've seen it with my own eyes the utter misery and despair people have been in having to go through the system and trying to make ends meet on a daily basis.

I found the acting strong. Dave Jones who plays Daniel portrays the part of an unemployed, middle aged man well. The process of finding work and the rules and regulations can be a strain on anyone, and this film highlights the plight that everyday people in this situation are in. It can make you feel demoralized and leave you with low self-esteem. We see this in Katie's own life. This is definitely worth watching.


I, Daniel Blake Trailer.

Did you enjoy this film?

5 out of 5 stars from 1 rating of I, Daniel Blake


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Coffeequeeen profile imageAUTHOR

      Louise Powles 

      4 months ago from Norfolk, England

      Yes Ethel, I agree. It touched me too. It's a very moving film.

    • ethel smith profile image

      Ethel Smith 

      4 months ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      We saw this movie at a local independent cinema not long after its release. It was a packed house. The silence of the audience was noticeable. I had taken a small pack of tissues with me as had been told it was a very moving film. Before the lights went down I chatted with a woman sat next to me and told her about the tissues. In one particularly moving scene in the film I heard her snuffling and passed her a tissue. Safe to say that movie had a massive impact on the audience that night.

    • shprd74 profile image

      Hari Prasad S 

      18 months ago from Bangalore

      What an authentic movie !!!. Thanks for the review and suggestion. Loved it.

      - hari

    • Claire-louise profile image

      Claire Raymond 

      22 months ago from UK

      You have definitely made my mind up about watching this film, I have been thinking I should and now I will, dealing with the job centre is a nightmare.

    • Haider Mama profile image


      2 years ago from Melbourne

      I am a movie buff so you gave me an option to watch. The story seems interesting. I am going to see some more reviews of what people think about this movie.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 

      2 years ago from San Diego California

      I haven't seen it, but it looks like it is worth a whirl. Great review.

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 

      2 years ago

      Thank you for the review. It seems many people, including myself, can relate to this movie. The character is also at the right age. At 59 he is too young to retire and too old to have an expectation of starting another career. The "rules" of collecting unemployment are different in America, and probably every other country in the world. Still it is best to understand the rules. I know I got caught in that trap. Some "rules" seem to make no sense but they have to be followed.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      2 years ago from Southern Illinois

      This is a movie I would enjoy. We live in the computer age and many older people do not have the skill. I know, I had to take a computer class, and still not totally tech. savvy. I have friends who refuse to own a computer, due to lack of knowledge. Thank you for sharing...

    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      2 years ago from USA

      This looks like an interesting film, and if it's available where I live I'd like to see it. Access to computers and ability to use them are everything these days. Even though they don't have anything to do with the actual job you may be applying for (carpentry), if you don't have the computer skills/access you're at a serious disadvantage.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)