BMT Stories hosted a fantastic event at the Regent Street Cinema showing a documentary directed by Jairus McCleary titled “The Work.” The theme of the film was exploring toxic masculinity, redemption and the importance of vulnerability and how it has developed in society for decades.
Set inside a single room in Folsom Maximum Security Prison, three men from the outside participated in a four-day group therapy retreat with level-four convicts. Over the four days, each man in the room takes his turn at delving deep into his past. Unlocking emotions and memories that were once forgotten years ago during all different pivotal moments in their life at all different ages. Expressing a variety of emotions such as betrayal, loneliness, neglect or even a problematic path of not knowing who they are in this world and where they belong.
This documentary proved to be dominant for not only the guests but the convicts too, unravelling their journey and internalising why they are in the position they are in prison.
One of the convicts said, “let it out, stand up tall like a man and cry” and so he did and this gateway of tears, screaming, shouting, anger flooded through him almost like an exorcism.
The intensity of the documentary was straight away matched in the auditorium, 188 audience members were taken on a roller coaster of emotions, crying, screaming, confusion, laughter but finally met with applause.
Alain Clapham better known as ‘Fusion’ hosted a Q&A discussion with Just-Ori, Bryan Bonaparte, Zimbo Freemind and Wayne Mertines-Brown.
Q&A was followed by performances from 2 amazingly talented spoken word poets Broken Pen and Just-Ori delving into their personal life and rather us the audience trying to figure them out. They painted their life onto a canvas for us to understand their journey, both ending their performances with a huge round of applause.
“Would black men ever forgive society and people in control for what they have done to them?” -BMT Quote