The WORK series is a cycle of independent films that seek to create an ongoing document of the American worker. Taking inspiration from Studs Terkel and Frederick Wiseman, the WORK films are entertaining and empowering, spectacular and mundane, amusing and redemptive.
Today documentary cameras are everywhere. Yet no one is capturing how we spend the majority of our lives, year after year, day after day, hour after hour – in other words, the record of how we work.
Using a timeless cinéma vérité aesthetic, independent filmmaker Daniel Kraus captures the sights, sounds, and textures of different American jobs, without the accompaniment of interviews or a musical score. Each chapter reveals the surprising, engaging, even redemptive routines of hard-working men and women across the country.
Although each film is humble in its approach, seen as a whole the WORK series is epic in scope, creating a significant historical document of modern American life.
Bishop William Nowell is certain of one thing: “You got to think ridiculous when it comes to Christ!”
For over 30 years, the self-taught preacher has presided over a small, working class, predominantly African American congregation in Virginia. A wayward adolescence led Nowell to the Lord, and his ecstatic faith is evident in every sermon, as the diminutive 72-year-old struts, shouts, and sings his electrifying message. But Nowell’s role in the community is deeper than that of religious leader. The New Covenant Pentecostal Church provides financial advice, emotional support, food for the needy, and rollicking, blues-infused gospel music—never more powerful than when performed inside the confines of the local jail.