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We acknowledge Australia’s First Nations People as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the land, and pay respect to the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, upon whose Country SFF are based.
We honour the storytelling and culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia.

Welfare

Directed by Frederick Wiseman
1975
USA
167 minutes
Unclassified 15+
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The staggering complexity of the American welfare system – and the countless personal dramas it seeks to accommodate – captured by a compassionate eye.
A young First Nations man in Manhattan’s Waverly Centre plaintively exclaims, “I’m a human being!”, setting the tone and focus right out of the blocks in Wiseman’s observational, narration-free documentary. It’s a wrenching plea for dignity that echoes throughout, as a succession of weary citizens navigate a labyrinth of departments and bureaucratic processes in order to qualify for social security, food stamps and pensions. Harried caseworkers and supervisors mostly exercise latitude where they can, with a striking exception or two. The disarming candour and directness of the protagonists shines through the trying circumstances.

Complement your in-cinema viewing of It Takes Time: Ten Films by Frederick Wiseman with a Wiseman Masterclass, hosted for a limited time on ACMI’s online platform, Cinema 3.
Wiseman's film shows... a battleground with the poor fighting... a complex web of Catch 22 regulations that can defeat even the strongest... An amazing film.
- London Film Festival

Tickets

Sat 11 Jun
9:30am
Art Gallery of New South Wales
Past Event Cancel
Program Strand
Wiseman Retrospective
Year
1975
Classification
Unclassified 15+
Country
USA
Language
In English and Spanish
Director
Frederick Wiseman
Producer
Frederick Wiseman
Cinematographer
William Brayne
Editor
Frederick Wiseman
Genre
Documentary, Cinephile, Human Rights, Politics & Economics, Retrospective
Company Credits
Sales Agent: Zipporah Films, Inc.
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