5Point Film Festival: ‘TranSending’ | AspenTimes.com

5Point Film Festival: ‘TranSending’

Andrew Travers
The Aspen Times
Erin Parisi in "TranSending."
Courtesy photo


What: ‘TranSending at at 5Point Adventure Film Festival

When: Program 4, Saturday, Oct. 17, 7 p.m.

Where: eventive.org; 5pointfilm.org

How much: Single program $20; All Access Passes $55-$75

More info: Saturday night’s program includes a total of 11 films. The festival concludes Sunday, Oct. 18.

Mountaineer Erin Parisi is attempting to climb the Seven Summits, but the short documentary “TranSending” doesn’t focus on bagging peaks and triumphant moments on the summit.

Instead, the film — playing at the virtual 5Point Adventure Film Festival on Saturday — focuses on Parisi’s inner journey, the time in between and her mission to become the first openly transgender woman to tackle the Seven Summits, her nonprofit work and her goals to raise awareness and visibility of trans people doing awesome things.

“I spent years afraid, running and hiding from myself. I came out as trans knowing I’d lose some friends and family members, but my relationship with myself and so many others became stronger,” she says in the film. “I’m climbing to the highest peaks of the world to celebrate that love and show the world that trans people won’t be forced to live silently in the shadows.”

Early in the film, Parisi looks at photos of herself, presenting as a man and tallying mountaineering accomplishments.

“I love what I’ve been able to accomplish but its hard to look at,” she says in the film. “It feels like a memory, a dream that’s not quite connected.”

Directed by Marin Hart and executive produced by Lindsey Hagen — a 5Point boardmember and filmmaker whose “Ode to Desolation” screened Friday — this intimate portrait goes with Parisi into her home with her partner, interviews the aunt Parisi first came out to and follows her to an appointment with a speech pathologist where she works on healing a vocal chord injury and finding her true voice.

Produced by the apparel company Merrell, the nine-minute film — like Parisi’s Seven Summits mission — is a step toward better trans visibility in mountaineering and the outdoor industry.

“I’m climbing where there are no shadows,” Parisi says, “and where there’s no place to hide.”

Saturday night’s online festival will be hosted by Paddy O’Connell. The festival closes on Sunday with the annual “Changemakers” program highlighting films about activism on environmental and social issues in the outdoor community at 3 p.m. It’s followed at 7 p.m. with the 5Point awards program, where the festival will hand out prizes and give encore screens for its award-winning films.