Bruce Sinofsky

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Bruce Sinofsky (March 31, 1956 – February 21, 2015) was an American documentary film director, particularly known for his films the Paradise Lost trilogy, Brother's Keeper and Some Kind of Monster , all created with Joe Berlinger.

<i>Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills</i> 1996 film by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky

Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills is a 1996 American documentary film directed, produced and edited by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky about the trials of the West Memphis Three, three teenage boys accused of the May 1993 murders and sexual mutilation of three prepubescent boys as a part of an alleged satanic ritual in West Memphis, Arkansas.

Brother's Keeper is a 1992 documentary directed by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky. The film is about an alleged 1990 murder in the village of Munnsville, New York. The film is in the "Direct Cinema" style of the Maysles brothers, who had formerly employed Berlinger and Sinofsky.

<i>Some Kind of Monster</i> (film) 2004 film by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky

Some Kind of Monster is a 2004 American documentary film featuring the American thrash metal band Metallica. It shares its name with the song "Some Kind of Monster" from Metallica's 2003 album St. Anger. The film shows many studio rehearsals and fragments of concert footage. It won the Independent Spirit Award for Best Documentary Feature. The DVD release was handled by Paramount Home Entertainment. Metallica re-released the film, including a bonus documentary, in 2014 to celebrate its 10th anniversary.

Contents

Early life and education

Sinofsky was born to a Jewish family [1] in Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated from the Tisch School of the Arts of New York University in 1978. [2]

American Jews, or Jewish Americans, are Americans who are Jews, whether by religion, ethnicity or nationality. The current Jewish community in the United States consists primarily of Ashkenazi Jews, who descend from diaspora Jewish populations of Central and Eastern Europe and comprise about 90-95% of the American Jewish population. Most American Ashkenazim are US-born, with a dwindling number of now elderly earlier immigrants, as well as some more recent foreign-born immigrants.

Boston Capital city of Massachusetts, United States

Boston is the capital and most populous city of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States. The city proper covers 48 square miles (124 km2) with an estimated population of 685,094 in 2017, making it also the most populous city in New England. Boston is the seat of Suffolk County as well, although the county government was disbanded on July 1, 1999. The city is the economic and cultural anchor of a substantially larger metropolitan area known as Greater Boston, a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) home to a census-estimated 4.8 million people in 2016 and ranking as the tenth-largest such area in the country. As a combined statistical area (CSA), this wider commuting region is home to some 8.2 million people, making it the sixth-largest in the United States.

Massachusetts State of the United States of America

Massachusetts, officially the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is the most populous state in the New England region of the northeastern United States. It borders on the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the states of Connecticut and Rhode Island to the south, New Hampshire and Vermont to the north, and New York to the west. The state is named after the Massachusett tribe, which once inhabited the east side of the area, and is one of the original thirteen states. The capital of Massachusetts is Boston, which is also the most populous city in New England. Over 80% of Massachusetts's population lives in the Greater Boston metropolitan area, a region influential upon American history, academia, and industry. Originally dependent on agriculture, fishing and trade, Massachusetts was transformed into a manufacturing center during the Industrial Revolution. During the 20th century, Massachusetts's economy shifted from manufacturing to services. Modern Massachusetts is a global leader in biotechnology, engineering, higher education, finance, and maritime trade.

Career

Sinofsky began his career at Maysles Films. As Senior Editor at the company, he worked on commercials and feature films until 1991, when he and Joe Berlinger formed their own production company, Creative Thinking International. They jointly produced, edited and directed documentary films which have appeared on over 50 critics choice lists,[ citation needed ] including Brother's Keeper (1992), the Paradise Lost trilogy (1996, 2004, 2011), Hollywood High (2003) and Some Kind of Monster (2004).

Albert and David Maysles American brothers documentary filmmaker duo

Albert and his brother DavidMaysles were an American documentary filmmaking team known for their work in the Direct Cinema style. Their best-known films include Salesman (1969), Gimme Shelter (1970) and Grey Gardens (1975).

Joe Berlinger American documentary filmmaker

Joseph Berlinger is an American filmmaker and producer. Particularly focused on true crime documentaries, Berlinger's films and docu-series draw attention to social justice issues in the US and abroad in such films as Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills, Crude, Whitey: United States of America v. James J. Bulger and Intent To Destroy: Death, Denial and Depiction. A 2017 HuffPost article said "Brother's Keeper (1992) and the Paradise Lost trilogy (1996–2011) helped pioneer the style of documentary filmmaking [seen] in Netflix's recent true crime sensation, Making a Murderer—a combination of artful cinematography, a stirring musical soundtrack, and a dramatic narrative structure as compelling as any scripted film."

The first movie Sinofsky directed, in 1992, was the documentary Brother's Keeper, [3] which tells the story of Delbart Ward, an elderly man in Munnsville, New York, who was charged with second-degree murder following the death of his brother William. Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert, in his review of the movie, called it "an extraordinary documentary about what happened next, as a town banded together to stop what folks saw as a miscarriage of justice." [4]

<i>Chicago Sun-Times</i> newspaper

The Chicago Sun-Times is a daily newspaper published in Chicago, Illinois, United States. It is the flagship paper of the Sun-Times Media Group, with the biggest circulation in Chicago and the 9th of the US.

Roger Ebert American film critic, author, journalist, and TV presenter

Roger Joseph Ebert was an American film critic, historian, journalist, screenwriter, and author. He was a film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times from 1967 until his death in 2013. In 1975, Ebert became the first film critic to win the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism.

The Paradise Lost trilogy chronicles the inhabitants of a small southern town a year after a series of brutal murders, in a style similar to that of award-winning documentary filmmaker Errol Morris.

Errol Morris American filmmaker and writer

Errol Mark Morris is an American film director primarily of documentaries examining and investigating, among other things, authorities and eccentrics. His 1988 documentary The Thin Blue Line, is cited among the best and most influential documentaries ever made. In 2003, his documentary film The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.

Sinofsky and Berlinger's work used various styles, including a paean to cinéma vérité. Metallica: Some Kind of Monster covers the heavy metal band Metallica as they participate in group therapy before recording their first album in five years. The pair also made a documentary on the southern record label for blues and country western artists, Sun Records called Good Rockin' Tonight .

Cinéma vérité style of documentary filmmaking

Cinéma vérité is a style of documentary filmmaking, invented by Jean Rouch, inspired by Dziga Vertov's theory about Kino-Pravda and influenced by Robert Flaherty’s films. It combines improvisation with the use of the camera to unveil truth or highlight subjects hidden behind crude reality.

Metallica American heavy metal band

Metallica is an American heavy metal band. The band was formed in 1981 in Los Angeles, California by drummer Lars Ulrich and vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield, and has been based in San Francisco, California for most of its career. The group's fast tempos, instrumentals and aggressive musicianship made them one of the founding "big four" bands of thrash metal, alongside Megadeth, Anthrax and Slayer. Metallica's current lineup comprises founding members Hetfield and Ulrich, longtime lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo. Guitarist Dave Mustaine and bassists Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton and Jason Newsted are former members of the band.

Death and tributes

Sinofsky died on February 21, 2015 at the age of 58, from diabetes-related complications. [5] [6] The band Metallica paid tribute to him as a "courageous man with deep empathy and wisdom who wasn't afraid to dig deep to tell the story." [6] Berlinger wrote that Sinofsky's "humanity is on every frame of the films that he leaves behind." [6]

The 2016 film Tony Robbins: I Am Not Your Guru [7] is dedicated to his memory.

The 2018 documentary May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers [8] is also dedicated to his memory.

Awards

Sinofsky won a Directors Guild of America Award and two Emmys,[ citation needed ] one for the first film in the Paradise Lost trilogy, The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills . [9] He was nominated for an Academy Award for the third film in the trilogy, Purgatory , in 2011. [6]

See also

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Paradise Lost 2: Revelations is a 2000 American documentary film directed and produced by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky, and the sequel to their 1996 film Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills, about the trials of the West Memphis Three, three teenage boys accused of the May 1993 murders and sexual mutilation of three prepubescent boys as a part of an alleged satanic ritual in West Memphis, Arkansas.

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References

  1. Bloom, Nate (February 15, 2012). "Jewish Stars: Oscar time". Cleveland Jewish News . Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  2. "NYU Alumnus Mark Bridges Wins Oscar for Best Costume Design for "The Artist"". New York University . 2012-02-27. Retrieved 2012-02-27.
  3. "Brother's Keeper". IMDb.com. 9 September 1992. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  4. Ebert, Roger. "Brother's Keeper Movie Review (1993) | Roger Ebert". www.rogerebert.com. Retrieved 2018-06-20.
  5. Emanuella Grinberg. "Director of 'Paradise Lost' trilogy dies". Cnn.com. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  6. 1 2 3 4 The Independent: Bruce Sinofsky dead: Metallica and Paradise Lost documentary director dies aged 58 (accessed 23 February 2015)
  7. "Tony Robbins: I Am Not Your Guru". IMDb.com. 15 July 2016. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  8. "May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers (2017)". IMDb.com. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  9. LA Times: Bruce Sinofsky dies at 58; Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker Latimes.com (accessed 23 February 2015)