Re-cut “Paradise Lost 3″ to premiere at NYFF

Filmmakers Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky will debut the new, re-cut ending for their anticipated "West Memphis Three" documentary Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory at the forthcoming New York Film Festival, which will also host docs from Oliver Stone and Frederick Wiseman.
August 25, 2011

Filmmakers Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky will debut the new, re-cut ending for their anticipated “West Memphis Three” documentary Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory at the forthcoming New York Film Festival (NYFF).

The HBO documentary, which is the third in a trilogy of films looking at the controversial imprisonment of Jason Baldwin, Damien Echols and Jessie Misskelly – collectively known as the “West Memphis Three” – will have its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) next month, in its original form.

Last week the filmmakers were in an Arkansas courthouse to document the release of the trio after 18 years in prison. As teenagers, the three were controversially convicted of the murders of three eight-year-old boys.

The filmmaking team decided not to rush to rework the film’s ending in time for its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, which kicks off September 8; however, the reworked ending for the film will play on the cut shown at the 49th NYFF, which takes place from September 30 to October 16 in New York City.

Elsewhere, the festival has announced that it will preview Oliver Stone’s ambitious non-fiction work The Untold History of the United States.

Produced as a 10-part series for U.S. net Showtime, which will premiere it in 2012, the NYFF will present the first three chapters of the series, which focus on the events leading up to America’s entrance into World War II, the war itself, and on former U.S. vice president Henry Wallace.

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion featuring Stone, co-writer Peter Kuznick, historian Douglas Brinkley (from Rice University) and journalist Jonathan Schell (The Nation).

NYFF’s line-up also includes music docs Andrew Bird: Fever Year, Xan Aranda’s look at the life of the contemporary musician and composer; and Mike Kerry and Chris Hall’s The Ballad of Mott the Hoople, which recounts the rise and fall of the British rockers.

The doc lens also turns on Hollywood with Corman’s World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel, Alex Stapleton’s study of producer-director Roger Corman; and Don’t Expect Too Much, a feature companion piece to Nicholas Ray’s We Can’t Go Home Again, from Ray’s widow Susan.

Her doc looks at her late husband’s stormy relationship with Hollywood, his self-imposed exile in Europe, and his eventual return to America. Meanwhile, Jeffrey Schwarz’s Vito profiles Vito Russo, cinephile,critic and writer of The Celluloid Closet.

Also playing at the NYFF is Frederick Wiseman’s Crazy Horse, a sequel of sorts to 2009′s Paris Opera Ballet portrait, La Danse. Wiseman looks at the erotic cabaret club, a Paris institution that is in its 60th year of operation.

Tahrir is Stefano Savona’s in-depth look at the Tahrir Square occupation, through the eyes of young Egyptians, while Patience (After Sebald) is a documentary essay on W.G. Sebald, structured as a journey through the Suffolk landscapes described in Sebald’s literary work, The Rings of Saturn.

Richard Peña, selection committee chair and program director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, which organizes the event, said that this year the festival would ‘offer a more expanded selection of non-fiction works than ever before.”

About The Author
Managing editor with realscreen publication, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Darah is an award-winning journalist who has spent over two decades covering a wide range of issues from real estate and urban development to immigration, politics and human rights, primarily with The Vancouver Sun. Prior to joining realscreen, she was editor of Stream Daily, realscreen's sister publication covering the dynamic global digital video industry. She also served a stint as a war reporter in Afghanistan for television and print, and was a national business blogger with Yahoo Canada.