I, Daniel Blake

Experience the compelling drama of ‘I, Daniel Blake,’ a film that sheds light on the heart-wrenching challenges faced by a carpenter navigating the UK welfare system after a health crisis. Discover the poignant bond he forms with a struggling single mother as they confront a callous bureaucracy, exploring themes of humanity, compassion, and resilience.

Shown: 6 March 2024

BBFC Ratings Badge 15

I, Daniel Blake Plot Synopsis

A 2016 British drama film directed by Ken Loach. The story centres on the titular character, Daniel Blake (played by Dave Johns), a 59-year-old carpenter in Newcastle, UK, who has recently suffered a heart attack and is deemed unfit for work by his doctors.

The film portrays Daniel’s frustrating journey through the UK’s welfare system as he attempts to claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA). Despite his doctor’s recommendation and his evident health issues, he faces bureaucratic hurdles and a bewildering system that often seems designed to frustrate and dehumanize claimants.

During his struggle, Daniel encounters Katie (Hayley Squires), a single mother of two who has also fallen through the cracks of the social safety net. They form an unlikely but profound friendship, supporting each other through their shared hardships.

“I, Daniel Blake” is a powerful and socially relevant film that sheds light on the dehumanizing effects of a complex and sometimes callous bureaucracy on the lives of ordinary people. It explores themes of compassion, resilience, and the injustices faced by individuals caught in the welfare system’s web. The film earned critical acclaim and won the Palme d’Or at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival for its raw and honest portrayal of social issues and the human spirit.

Film Reviews

Loach scans the contemporary landscape, and instead of a firebrand approach of stereotype, delivers a film of immense sadness. Someone should project this on the walls of the Department for Work and Pensions.

Andrew Lowry, Empire

I, Daniel Blake is about human value: disposable and abstract in one context; eternal, inviolable and sacred in another. They might underline the point a bit too thickly, but Loach and Laverty count on their audience to discern the difference, and to act accordingly.

Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

Official Film Trailer for I, Daniel Blake



< February 2024

April 2024 >

Top Gun: Maverick

After thirty years, Maverick is still pushing the envelope as a top naval aviator, but must confront ghosts of his past when he leads TOP GUN’s elite graduates on a mission that demands the ultimate sacrifice from those chosen to fly it.

Shown: 1 March 2023

Exminster Film Club Rating: 83%

BBFC Ratings Badge 12A

Top Gun: Maverick Plot Synopsis

After more than thirty years of service, military awards, medals and decorations for extraordinary heroism in combat, distinguished US Navy Captain Pete Mitchell, call sign Maverick, finds himself exactly where he belongs: pushing the limits as a top test pilot. Having spent years avoiding promotions after the events of Top Gun (1986), Maverick must now confront the ugly past and an uncertain future while tasked with training the next generation of elite fighter pilots for a nearly impossible suicide mission. As the veteran naval aviator prepares the brilliant graduates for the top-secret assignment, stretching the rules to the breaking point, Mitchell has to face an equally critical challenge: navigate through an uncomfortable relationship with a hotshot lieutenant holding a grudge. Can Maverick and his Top Guns perform a miracle, give the enemy hell, and come back home in one piece?Nick Riganas

Film Reviews

This is the ideal example of a big summer blockbuster and one of the best legacy sequels we’ve ever gotten: a movie that knows how to move along and give you what you came for.

Trace Sauveur – The Austin Chronicle

Thrilling, moving and gloriously Cruisey, Joseph Kosinski’s sequel to the 1986 hit is unquestionably the best studio action film in years.

Robbie Collin, The Telegraph

Official Film Trailer for Top Gun: Maverick



< February 2023

April 2023 >

Rear Window

A wheelchair-bound photographer spies on his neighbours from his Greenwich Village courtyard apartment window, and becomes convinced one of them has committed murder, despite the scepticism of his fashion-model girlfriend.

Shown: 2 March 2022

Exminster Film Club Rating: 92%

2019 BBFC Ratings Badge PG
  • Date of release: 1954
  • Running time: 1h 52m
  • Director: Alfred Hitchcock
  • Writer: John Michael Hayes and Cornell Woolrich
  • Country: USA
  • Language: English
  • Links: IMDB Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic BBFC

Rear Window Plot Synopsis

L.B. “Jeff” Jefferies is an immobilized photo-journalist who, after breaking his leg photographing a racetrack accident, finds himself wheelchair bound and confined to the walls of his apartment. His rear window looks out onto a courtyard and several other apartments, where the binocular-wielding Jefferies spends his days as a voyeur spying on his neighbours. Jefferies gradually becomes more and more engrossed with this activity of his, and soon brings his girlfriend, Lisa, in on the thrill of his voyeurism. It’s all fun and games for the two until they witness what they believe to be a murder in progress, becoming increasingly convinced as they continue to observe the apartment. [KP]

Film Reviews

The most densely allegorical of Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpieces, moving from psychology to morality to formal concerns and finally to the theological. It is also Hitchcock’s most innovative film in terms of narrative technique, discarding a linear story line in favour of thematically related incidents, linked only by the powerful sense of real time created by the lighting effects and the revolutionary ambient sound track.

Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader

Hitchcock confines all of the action to this single setting and draws the nerves to the snapping point in developing the thriller phases of the plot. He is just as skilled in making use of lighter touches in either dialog or situation to relieve the tension when it nears the unbearable. Interest never wavers during the 112 minutes of footage.

William Brogdon, Variety

Official Film Trailer for Rear Window



< February 2022

April 2022 >

Hidden Figures

The March 2020 Exminster Film Club Film is the story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who rose through the ranks at NASA during the early years of the American space program.

Shown: 4 March 2020

BBFC Ratings Badge PG

Hidden Figures Plot Synopsis

As the United States raced against Russia to put a man in space, NASA found untapped talent in a group of African-American female mathematicians that served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in U.S. history. Based on the unbelievably true life stories of three of these women, known as “human computers”, we follow these women as they quickly rose the ranks of NASA alongside many of history’s greatest minds specifically tasked with calculating the momentous launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, and guaranteeing his safe return. Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and Katherine Gobels Johnson crossed all gender, race, and professional lines while their brilliance and desire to dream big, beyond anything ever accomplished before by the human race, firmly cemented them in U.S. history as true American heroes.

Film Reviews

Hidden Figures, both a dazzling piece of entertainment and a window into history, bucks the trend of the boring-math-guy movie.

Stephanie Zacharek, Time

Its positive message about education, the value of hard work, and the power of social commitment make it a must-see for parents and kids alike.

Tirdad Derakhshani, Philadelphia Equirer

Official Film Trailer for Hidden Figures



< February 2020

September 2020 >