Open Up to Me
Kerron Sinulle Kaiken

DIRECTOR: Simo Halinen

Expected to attend: Director Simo Halinen

Since her transition from man to woman, Maarit lives a life apart from other people—distant from her estranged wife and daughter and marooned in a dead-end cleaning job far beneath what her education merits. When by chance she meets a handsome, married soccer coach named Sami, her carefully constructed solitude begins to crumble.

While Maarit is sure of herself and her new life, Sami may not be able to handle what society might think of her as a transgender woman. Complicating matters are Sami’s wife, Julia; Teo, a teenage soccer player he coaches; and Maarit’s daughter, Pinja—all of whom have their own agendas. Maarit finds herself at the center of a web of relationships in which everyone is heartbreakingly and fallibly human. At the same time, the ghost of her old life threatens to endanger the precarious balance of her new one.

Part psychodrama and part coming-of-age tale, Open Up to Me is spare and unfussy. It features superb acting from Leea Klemola, who won a Jussi (Finland’s highest film award) for her work in the lead role. As Maarit, she equally embodies vulnerability and determination as a woman who is anxious for her life to finally begin.

— Mordecai Stayton

In Finnish with English subtitles.

AT&T Audience Award Text Voting Code: F131

Co-presented by:
TRANS:THRIVE

Sponsor: Les Concierges

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