I always look forward to watching the documentaries that are playing at the Dallas International film festival. Over the years, I have seen some pretty good ones. I especially enjoy the music based films.

This brings me to a particular documentary that stood out to me at this year’s festival: Man in The Camo Jacket. The film follows Mike Peters, the frontman of the popular Welsh rock group, The Alarm, and shows not only the ups and downs of the band, but also Mike’s battle with cancer. For those that have had someone in their lives face that battle, it is not an easy road.


While watching this masterpiece of a documentary, a documentary that was filmed over a course of eight years, you see a man whose spirit is never broken even though he’s battling a tough disease. You see a musician who loves his art form, and who will keep working to share his music with the world. Most importantly, you see a husband, father, and friend who has strong support from his loved ones and peers.

Mike Peters shows in this documentary that even though you are faced with a challenge, you keep going; you keep moving forward. He enjoys life and wants to live it to the fullest. In one scene, he is hiking Mount Snowdon in Wales, with fans. He did the hike to show his appreciation to the local hospital that helped treat his cancer.

You also see The Love Hope Strength Foundation (LHSF). This foundation is actually the first international music centric cancer charity. The foundation provides treatment to thousands of patients around the globe.

I got a chance to speak with the film’s producer, James Chippendale, who is a fellow cancer survivor. Chippendale brought Peters to see his leukemia doctors at Baylor and UT Southwestern in Dallas.


Chippendale mentioned to me in our interview about Peter’s work ethic. In the film, you see him still trying to rehearse, though he is not feeling well from the treatment. He still goes out there and performs concerts.

Man in The Camo Jacket doesn’t only highlight a music career, but it highlights one man strife, a strong persistence to not giving up and beating a terrible disease called leukemia.

The film is so inspirational and moving. It is definitely one of the best documentaries I’ve seen, and I do hope people get a chance to watch it.

Charlie Vann




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