MCN Review: Get to Work


Get to Work is
a nonfiction series about a fourweek
“tough love” program,
teaching the basics of getting and
keeping a job. Participants are
mostly recovering addicts and
ex-offenders. They learn how to
smile, make eye contact and shake
hands; how to work on a project
(say, putting on a 30-minute play);
how to impress at a job interview.

Filmed at San Diego’s Second Chance program, each of eight episodes follows
the counselors and a new class. Some students are motivated; some aren’t. In the
pilot, one man who thinks he’ll “fake it to make it” washes out and might possibly
violate his probation. Another, a former gang member afraid of losing his fiancée
and daughter, directs the play, graduates and gets a job. All are real people, not stereotypes,
and it’s easy to empathize with or at least understand them. The cameras
record but don’t orchestrate the experience. And even if you have a job, some
advice (keep smiling) never gets old.