Academy Award-winning filmmaker Errol Morris has covered a lot of crazy stories in his day and he’s arguably the godfather of the true-crime documentary that we all love and spend watching as docu-series on places like Netflix (see the monumental true-crime doc “The Thin Blue Line“). Whether crafting incisive political docs like “The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara,” or making portraits of eccentric Americans (“Vernon, Florida“), Morris is one-of-a-kind original and innovator. And his latest, “My Psychedelic Love Story,” sounds like an equally nutty story too.
“My Psychedelic Love Story” centers on Timothy Leary, the notorious High Priest of LSD, and de facto king of the hippie movement in the 1960s and 1970s. Leary wasn’t full-on anti-establishment, but why then, did he become a narc in 1974—abandoning the millions he urged to turn on, tune in, and drop out? Was his “perfect love” Joanna Harcourt-Smith a government pawn? Or was she simply a rich, beautiful, young woman out for the adventure of a lifetime? Looking back, even Joanna doesn’t know and Morris doc is a love story that’s also part conspiracy tale.
Here’s the official synopsis:
From Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Errol Morris (The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara) a psychedelic head trip crossed with a possible CIA conspiracy and wrapped in a fascinating love story. Errol Morris’ latest documentary takes us on an Alice in Wonderland adventure deep inside a largely forgotten episode of the early ’70s. Told through the lens of Swiss-born, Paris-raised free spirit Joanna Harcourt-Smith, Timothy Leary’s lover, MY PSYCHEDELIC LOVE STORY examines the twists and turns that led Leary, the High Priest of LSD, to seemingly sell out the millions he urged to “turn on, tune in and drop out” and become a narc in 1974. At the heart of the story is the woman Leary described as his “perfect love.” Was she a government pawn, a Mata Hari, or simply a beautiful, young, intelligent woman on the trip of a lifetime? Through a series of candid interviews, Morris and Harcourt-Smith reexamine this chaotic period, resulting in a singular snapshot of the early 1970s’ cultural landscape-and its profound impact on the trajectory of one woman’s life.
“My Psychedelic Love Story” premieres on Showtime on November 29th at 9pm ET/PT. Watch the new trailer below.