Set in a foster-care facility outside of San Francisco, this independent drama is vivid and heartfelt in its depiction of social work, at times recalling some of Frederick Wiseman’s great documentary portraits. Writer-director Destin Daniel Cretton (expanding on his 2008 short of the same name) once worked at a center like the one in the film, and you can feel the influence of firsthand experience in the immediacy of the action and specificity of detail. This feels somewhat contrived in its narrative mechanics, yet it gets so many things right—about state bureaucracy, the ways children internalize abuse, and working life in general—that the shortcomings are easy to overlook. The young actors who play the foster kids are extraordinary (you never sense they’re grabbing for your heartstrings), and Brie Larson and John Gallagher Jr. are also impressive as dedicated care providers at the center.