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Friends Film Club: Dominic Allan, ‘Calvet’

The East End Film Festival

Friends events

Monday 24 October 2016
7 — 9pm

This event has now ended

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Join us for a special film screening in collaboration with the East End Film Festival. Artist Jean-Marc Calvet will be joining us from Nicaragua to give further insight to the film that charts his extraordinary story of redemption as he embarks on a journey to make peace with his past.

French painter Jean Marc Calvet recounts his incredible life story as a street kid turned Cannes bodyguard who abandoned his family, robbed a Miami mobster, hid out in Central America and at the age of 38 overcame addictions through an extraordinary metamorphosis in which he began to paint. Now an established artist, his intricate paintings sell for five figures, but he remains desperate to reconcile with his son he left behind.

Abused street kid, Foreign Legionnaire, vice cop, professional bodyguard, underground thug – Calvet is a cat with many lives. Then in 2002 in Costa Rica, he arrived at the end of the road. Lost and damned, besieged by shame and self-hatred, he bought the last house at the end of a cul-de-sac, shut himself in and refused all contact with the outside world for 9 months.

Calvet failed in his mission to die. Instead he descended into hallucinations and paranoia, he went to war with himself, destroying the house as he tried to escape the demons that were tormenting him. Then one night, Calvet’s trajectory changed forever. Amongst all that he hurled against the walls that night, including himself, was a stack of rusty industrial paint pots that he had discovered under the stairs. Following hours of madness he collapsed exhausted and found himself gazing at a wall covered in blood and paint. And he understood the language. He saw anger, hate, violence, death… and he felt an overwhelming sense of release. He had found a weapon to defeat the person he had become. Something inside had awoken. He had found the way out. He began to paint like a man possessed. Read more about the film.

Dominic Allan is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, with an impressive range of political, historical, observational and travel documentaries.

“Powerful, riveting, inspiring… an emotional roller coaster” David Gritten, Daily Telegraph UK

“An astonishing true story, will stay with you forever * * * *” Henry Fitzherbert, Sunday Express UK

Booking is essential for these events, if you wish to bring a guest please book one ticket for each person.

Tickets include a welcome drink and popcorn.

● Fully booked

● Cancelled

Monday 24 October 2016

7 — 9pm

Sir Hugh Casson Room, The Keeper’s House, Royal Academy of Arts

£12 (including popcorn and a drink). Booking required, Friends only.